Tokyo-based early stage venture capital firm GREE Ventures has led a $1 million seed funding round into Ayopop, an Indonesian bill payment platform. The round was joined by various high net worth individuals, and was supported by Freecharge founder Sandeep Tandon, the company revealed in a statement.
The fresh funding will help Ayopop expand their tech capabilities, as it plans to launch more features and increase partnerships with other platforms. It is aiming to join hands with e-commerce, traditional market players, and financial service companies.
“We believe that payments will play an essential role in Indonesian fintech landscape over the years to come, and it remains still largely an unsolved problem,” said Nikhil Kapur, of GREE Ventures.
Ayopop offers settlement for a wide range of utilities such as electricity, water, internet and TV, mobile postpaid, and several others. Its mobile app is already available on Google Play and AppStore, and currently records between 50,000 and 100,000 downloads on Android.
The app was launched about a year ago by co-founders Jakob Rost – a former managing director at Lazada Indonesia – and Chiragh Kirpalani, who grew up in Jakarta and was heading teams in Fab.com and Times Internet India. Currently, Ayopop employs 30 members.
Fintech, especially mobile payments, is rapidly growing as other “mainstream” tech players like Grab and Go-Jek are starting to offer similar service. Just yesterday, Grab finally confirmed its intention to acquire Indonesian payment startup Kudo, which is also backed by GREE Ventures.
The space is seeing a lot of exciting action lately, and this could be a sign of validation of Ayopop’s concept, Rost stated.
“Most Indonesians are still paying their bills offline. This behaviour is ultimately shifting online and therefore offering big potential for companies like us. And this is just the beginning. Most of our users have never done an e-commerce transaction before and come from all parts of Indonesia,” he said.
Eventually, Ayopop will want to grow beyond bill payments, Kirpalani added.
“We are a tech company at heart with a very solid product team. We have been studying purchase behaviour and recently launched a scoring algorithm that helps us predict cross-selling opportunities. There is a lot to build on from here and we are actively looking to move further into the fintech space.”