Tokopedia picks Morgan Stanley, Citi to manage debut listing

Indonesia’s e-commerce giant PT Tokopedia said it has hired Morgan Stanley and Citigroup Inc. as advisers to help accelerate its plan to go public.

“We have not decided yet which market and method, and are still considering options,” the Jakarta-based company said in a statement on Wednesday. “SPAC is a potential option that we could consider but we have not committed to anything at the moment.”

The comments come after Bloomberg News reported Bridgetown Holdings Ltd., the blank-check company backed by billionaires Richard Li and Peter Thiel, is considering a potential merger with Tokopedia. The special purpose acquisition company is exploring the structure and feasibility of a deal with Tokopedia. The SoftBank Group Corp.-backed firm could be valued at $8 billion to $10 billion in a transaction.

For Tokopedia, a sale to a SPAC would be a speedier way to list in the U.S. Still, William Tanuwijaya, co-founder and chief executive officer of Tokopedia, has in the past said he would seek a dual listing so employees and consumers in Indonesia can own shares of the company.

Tokopedia is Indonesia’s second most valuable startup after ride-hailing and delivery giant Gojek. Its early backers include SoftBank Vision Fund, Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. and Sequoia India. Alphabet Inc.’s Google and Temasek Holdings Pte have also invested about $350 million in Tokopedia, people familiar with the matter have said.

“An IPO of Tokopedia would give investors a way to invest directly in an Indonesian e-commerce rival,” of Sea Ltd., the only major Southeast Asian internet company listed in the U.S. Bloomberg Intelligence Matthew Kanterman wrote in a note.

Bridgetown raised $550 million in a U.S. initial public offering in October, following other so-called blank-check companies such as those associated with billionaire investor Bill Ackman and former U.S. House Speaker Paul Ryan.

Merging with a SPAC has become an increasingly popular method for closely-held businesses to raise capital for growth. A potential merger with Tokopedia would also be in-line with the strategy that Bridgetown set out in its prospectus: to focus on a target in the technology, financial services or media sectors in Southeast Asia.

Bloomberg

Singapore Reporter/s

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

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  • 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.