Of Indonesian tech business & startups : 5 trends and opportunities

Indonesia’s emerging startups scene is trying to cope with the fast-changing society as the country experiences its first tech boom ever. With large and young population, urban city struggles, Indonesian business landscape has been transformed into a much more dynamic one.

Wavecell, a Singapore-based cloud communications provider, pinpoints five key trends that Indonesian businesses can look-out for in 2016 in its recent report.

Changing society, changing customers

The largest economy in South East Asia is home to more than 260 million people with the average age of 27 years old.

For these young customers, the need for real-time automated communications is becoming more and more essential. And so an increasing number of Indonesian companies are trying to switch their traditional customer communications habits to adapt to the new behaviour.

An Odins report on SMB Cloud Insights research for Indonesia reveals that more than 4 million small-medium business in the country are using cloud services, with the number expected to expand quickly within the next few years.

As Indonesia shifts away from a traditional approach of communications such as landlines, emails, and call centres, integrating cloud-based services for SMS, chat, and video calls to cater to new customer support models is on the rise within the startups and enterprises environments.

Local pain-points solving

Companies such as Grab, Go-Jek, Porter and numerous others adopted the mission to solve pain-points related to the local territory on a national or regional scale. They aim at facilitating daily struggles such as personal transportation or shipping goods. 

These companies value quick and versatile interactions with their customers to offer efficient services. Automating and optimizing such interactions, thanks to the services provided by communications API provider, is vital for such businesses to scale and cater to a growing base of customers.

Online-to-Offline (O2O)

Indonesia refuses to be left behind in the online-to-offline (O2O) sector, a growing and attractive segment that helps bridge the connected and disconnected worlds.

From mobile applications aggregating laundry (KliknKlin) to YESSBOSS and its concierge service, or all the transportation apps stated above, it was clear that a universal purpose among these companies are to smooth consumer behaviour transition.

Automated 2-way SMS messaging is an excellent medium to trigger interaction between the online world: applications, servers, website and individuals who do not always have a permanent data connection.

Marketplaces for masses

HappyFresh, MatahariMall, Bukalapak, and Tokopedia are only some of the big names in the growing e-commerce Marketplaces in Indonesia. These companies, with business models ranging from B2B to B2B2C, selling groceries or fashion products, aim to facilitate transaction between buyers and sellers on a large scale on the back of technological platform advancement.

Bridging the rural urban divide

Based on statistics from the World Population Review, there are over 10 million inhabitants in Jakarta’s agglomeration.

With 53.7 per cent of the total Indonesian population living in urban areas, it would be easy to target this accessible market and forget about the 130 million inhabitants living in rural areas.

But one startup company, Kioson, sees this gap and has attempted to provide connected PoS devices to rural retailers and SMB in Indonesia. They offer training services to enable traditional merchants make the most of modern technologies.

Overall, Wavecell found that 2-way SMS is an integral component of their communication strategy thanks to its nature of being read almost instantaneously.

SMB Cloud Insights research for Indonesia found that unified communications such as ‘hosted business voice’ and ‘collaboration applications’ is the ‘second-largest category of the Indonesian cloud market, which is now valued at around Rp 4 trillion ($324 million), and is poised for expansion.

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Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.