Indonesia’s angel investor network Angel-eQ is looking to add five new startups into its portfolio this year, while at the same time attracting more angels. It is hoping to get at least another five to seven angels who are willing to invest between $500,000 to $1 million per ticket, according to politician and entrepreneur Sandiaga Uno.
Uno told this portal last week that the network will continue to invest in Indonesian “young talents”, whom he argued are still in desperate need for support and guidance from the more experienced angels. Angel investments will indeed play an increasingly bigger role in Indonesia’s growing startup ecosystem, in which private funding is still the backbone.
“Most of the young founders I’ve met can only bootstrap for three to six months at most. After that there needs to be a handover to the angel community, not only for money but also for mentorship and guidance,” Uno said.
Seven sectors to watch
There were seven sector verticals that Uno said would receive much attention from investors starting this year: health, consumer, food, daily necessities, fintech, education, and energy. Uno, who is also running as deputy candidate in the Jakarta gubernatorial election, emphasized the need for affordable and accessible healthcare.
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Energy will also be alluring, in particular because it will disrupt the ways of collecting, gathering, and distributing energy in the future. Uno predicted, or rather hoped, that someone will find a way to distribute solar panels into Indonesian households.
However, it seems that everyone agrees that fintech will be the prima donna, especially after authorities introduced a new set of rules for peer-topeer (P2P) lending platforms, boosting investors’ confidence in the sector. Major banks have also started to ink partnerships with fintech companeis, out of fear that they will be left behind.
Rosan Roeslani, chairman of the Indonesian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (KADIN), went as far as saying that investments into the fintech industry is expected to reach $8 billion by 2018.
“Everyone will be looking at fintech,” Uno said.
Uno, along with other high-profile investors and entrepreneurs in the region such as Shinta Dhanuwardoyo, Erick Thohir, Emil Abeng, Michael Steven, Adi Sariaatmadja, and Tony Fernandes, formed Angel e-Q Network in 2015.
The network claims to be “Indonesia’s first tech-enabled focused investor network”, that is “sector agnostic but emphasizes its investments on innovative companies that use technology as an enabler to scale up and grow quickly.”
Angel communities in Indonesia, though rare, are starting to gain popularity among startup founders as an alternative source of funding. 2015 also saw the forming of the Indonesian angel investment network (ANGIN), a spin-off program of Global Entrepreneurship Program Indonesia (GEPI), which now boasts over 40 angel investors – the largest in the country – and about 20 invested companies.