Indonesia’s Telkomsel looks to invest in Gojek via $150m bond purchase

Photo by Gojek

PT Telekomunikasi Selular, Indonesia’s biggest wireless network provider, is weighing investing in Gojek by buying $150 million of convertible bonds issued by the ride-hailing startup, according to people with knowledge of the matter.
Telkomsel, a unit of state-owned PT Telekomunikasi Indonesia, has been in talks with Gojek on the matter for some time as part of a push to expand its digital business, said one of the people, who asked not to be identified as the process is private.Deliberations on the issue, including size and timing, are ongoing and there is no certainty that a deal will proceed, said the people. A representative from Gojek declined to comment.

Telkomsel President Director Setyanto Hantoro said the company cannot comment on deals as it is bound by non-disclosure agreements, but it continues to seek opportunities to expand its services by building existing resources, borrowing via partnerships, and buying external resources including startups.

Telkomsel is the largest wireless carrier in the Southeast Asian nation with 171 million subscribers, according to Telkom’s 2019 annual report. The company counts Singapore Telecommunications Ltd. as a minority shareholder.

Gojek has streamlined its core businesses to focus on digital payments, transport, and food delivery in Indonesia, in a bid to move toward profitability. The startup is backed by some of the world’s largest technology companies including Google, Tencent Holdings Ltd., Facebook Inc. and PayPal Holdings Inc.

Its arch-rival Grab Holdings Inc. has recently come under pressure from SoftBank Group Corp., its biggest investor, to work out a ceasefire with Gojek, and the two companies are in regular contact, Bloomberg News has reported.

Bloomberg

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. 
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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.