Indonesian e-commerce giant Tokopedia ropes in Google as newest investor

Photo: Bloomberg

Indonesian e-commerce major PT Tokopedia is learnt to have roped in US internet giant Google as its latest investor, multiple executives aware of the deal told DealStreetAsia.

Two executives aware of the latest financing round said that Google had invested around $300 million in the Indonesian unicorn that is backed by SoftBank Group Corp’s Vision Fund.

DealStreetAsia has not been able to independently verify the $300 million figure.

An executive from Google who is aware of the development confirmed to DealStreetAsia that the transaction has closed, but declined to share details.

In June this year, DealStreetAsia reported that Tokopedia had raised $500 million from Singapore’s state investor Temasek Holdings. The deal had given Tokopedia a pre-money valuation of about $7.5 billion, according to sources. At that time, we had also added that Tokopedia was in talks with US-based strategics to add another $500 million to the round.

The Google investment is said to be part of this extended round, and Tokopedia had been in the market to raise as much as $1 billion.

For Google, this marks its second major investment in an Indonesian unicorn. The American technology behemoth has backed super-app Gojek, which is also Indonesia’s most valuable startup, and commands a valuation of around $11 billion.

Google had also invested $4.5 billion for a 7.73% stake in the top Indian telecom network, Reliance Jio.

Earlier reports said that Tokopedia had held fundraising talks with other US internet giants Facebook, Microsoft Corp., and Amazon.com.

Representatives of Tokopedia and Google had not responded to queries from DealStreetAsia at the time of publication.

According to statistics by iPrice, Tokopedia and Shopee currently sit on top of the Indonesian e-commerce leader board in terms of web visits and apps download.

Tokopedia’s growth in Indonesia has been much fuelled by the backing of several well-heeled investors, including Alibaba, Sequoia Capital India and SoftBank Vision Fund, which led its last $1.1 billion round in December 2018, valuing the company at $7 billion.

The latest funding round comes as the e-commerce marketplace in Indonesia heats up with regional rivals including Sea Group’s Shopee muscling into the sector.

Separately, Tokopedia-affiliated companies now control 41.1 per cent of shares in the parent company of Indonesian digital payments services provider OVO, according to a DealStreetAsia analysis of shareholding documents.

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.