Indonesian ride-hailing giant Go-Jek will invest $500 million in its expansion into the four Southeast Asian markets of Vietnam, Thailand, Singapore and the Philippines in the next few months, the company said in a release.
Go-Jek said it will initially offer its ride-hailing services in these new markets, with plans to add additional services later. It offers digital payments, food delivery, logistics and on-demand services in its home market of Indonesia, besides ride-hailing. It claims to have over 900,000 registered drivers throughout the country and says it facilitates over 100 million transactions per month.
The Southeast Asia expansion, according to Go-Jek, follows many months of detailed planning and market research following its latest fundraising round, which was joined by KKR, Warburg Pincus, Google, BlackRock, Jd.com, Meituan, Tencent and Temasek, among others. The round is believed to have pushed up the Indonesian unicorn’s valuation to $5 billion.
Commenting on the expansion plan, Go-Jek founder and CEO Nadiem Makarim said: “Consumers are happiest when they have choice and at the moment, people in Vietnam, Thailand, Singapore and the Philippines don’t feel that they’re getting enough when it comes to ride-hailing. We hope that as we arrive in new markets, we will quickly become everyone’s go-to lifestyle app. That is our aspiration. In the meantime, we hope our presence will provide the welcome competition markets need to thrive”.
Since rival Grab’s acquisition of Uber’s Southeast Asia operations, Go-Jek has been looking to fill the void left by Uber in a number of regional markets. Regulators in some markets have already expressed concerns about potential monopoly brought about as a result of the Grab-Uber deal.
Go-Jek already competes with Grab in Indonesia, where, according to a recent survey by market research company ecommerceIQ, the Indonesian startup is the most-often used ride-hailing app according to 57 per cent of Indonesian respondents, followed by Grab (33 per cent) and Uber (8 per cent). However, both Go-Jek and Grab have claimed to be market leaders, citing results of different surveys in the past.
The Indonesian company had previously revealed plans to operate in four member countries of the Association of the Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) but did not specify the targeted countries. Late last year, Go-Jek had identified the Philippines as the first country in the region where it will set up operations in. It also told Reuters at the time that “almost all Southeast Asian countries are on the radar over the next three, six to 12 months”.