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PITCH
With its super app of on-demand services and own payments platform, Indonesia’s first unicorn is expanding into Southeast Asia, backed by KKR, Tencent and Temasek.
WHY?

Terrible traffic

In Jakarta alone, traffic congestions caused IDR 65 trillion in annual productivity loss.

Unpredictable pricing

With traditional motorcycle taxi drivers, passengers need to haggle for a price before each journey.

Unbanked population

Many in Southeast Asia do not have bank accounts, relying on cash for daily transactions.

MARKET

650 million

Estimated combined population of Southeast Asia

Go-Jek looks set to expand its presence to the entire Southeast Asia region, where there is still much room to solve the road traffic and unbanked population problems.

PRODUCT
Using a motorcycle taxi network as its backbone, Go-Jek is a one-stop app for everything on-demand – transport, courier, food delivery, even massage and house cleaning. Payment via cash or Go-Pay, an e-wallet that can be used for Go-Jek services and other payments.
Using a motorcycle taxi network as its backbone, Go-Jek is a one-stop app for everything on-demand – transport, courier, food delivery, even massage and house cleaning. Payment via cash or Go-Pay, an e-wallet that can be used for Go-Jek services and other payments.
BUSINESS MODEL
Leveraging its motorcycle-taxi network as its logistics backbone, Go-Jek can easily “stack on” many on-demand services – powering its rapid expansion into higher-margin vertical markets. At the top of the chain is financial services, especially for the millions of unbanked Indonesians, which Go-Jek can provide via its e-wallet, challenging traditional banks.

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Go-Jek started out as a call center connecting passengers with motorcycle-taxi drivers, known locally as ojek. The company provided training and uniforms to the drivers and set a standard pricing. These, together with having customers rate its drivers, helped build Go-Jek’s image of reliability and safety, hence gaining riders’ trust and boosting its popularity.

Verticals

By leveraging the motorcycle taxi network it has built, Go-Jek was then able to easily add on – or in its founder Nadiem Makarim’s words, “stack on” – different services/businesses to this logistics infrastructure, enabling its rapid vertical expansion into many markets. This includes food delivery, courier services, and even lifestyle services such as massage, make-up or professional house cleaning. Strategic partnerships have also enabled Go-Jek to offer ticket booking services and large goods shipping (via the Go-Box truck booking service). Some of its lifestyle services, such as the massage and beautician booking services, are now grouped under a separate Go-Life app.

Financial services

Go-Jek is eyeing a slice of the largest and most profitable market – financial services. For starters, through its e-wallet Go-Pay, customers could soon bypass banks and use Go-Pay to shop for everything they need. Besides paying for Go-Jek’s own services, customers can use Go-Pay to pay various bills or top up their mobile card’s balance. The e-wallet can be easily topped up through Go-Jek drivers.

Currently, it is also conducting trials for QR code-based payments in offline stores, such as food stalls. The founders’ vision includes extending financial services to the estimated 110 million Indonesians who don’t have a bank account.

TIMELINE

  • Launch
  • Growth
  • Recent Developments
  • Future Plans
  • 2011 - Launched Go-Jek call center with 20 motorcycle taxi drivers, won US$10,000 in a competition.

    Read in detail:

    The launch

    February, launched Go-Jek call center with 20 motorcycle taxi drivers.

    • Nadiem Makarim and Michaelangelo Moran created PT. Go-Jek Indonesia, a social enterprise to increase motorcycle taxi drivers’ daily income.
    • By setting up a call center to connect drivers with passengers, the enterprise was able to get more business for these drivers, who would normally spend hours waiting for customers at a motorcycle-taxi post.
    Expansion
    July, won US$10,000 in a competition through the American State Department's Global Entrepreneurship Program.
  • 2015 - Transformed into a technology startup, gained VC funding, rapid expansion.

    Read in detail:

    Products and services

    January, launched Go-Jek app (Android and iOS) with 800 drivers and financial backing from NSI Ventures – the turning point in its business.

    • Users in the Greater Jakarta metropolitan area could order a motorcycle taxi service via the app for transportation, courier or shopping items below IDR 1 million.
    • Accepted cash payments, Go-Jek credits or a corporate pin (for staff of cooperating companies). Users could buy Go-Jek credits through bank transfer, or receive Go-Jek credits by sharing their Go-Jek promotion code with friends.
    • “Timing is important because if you launch these things too early – before people have the right connectivity, the right phones – you need to be sufficiently confident that it can scale up,” said Shane Chesson, co-founder of NSI Ventures.

    April, launched food delivery service feature, Go-Food; expanded to Bandung, the capital city of West Java; reached 4,000 drivers in its network.

    • Go-Food covering about 15,000 street food vendors and fancy restaurants in the Greater Jakarta metropolitan area. September, unveiled Go-Mart across the Greater Jakarta metropolitan area; partnered with Pertamina.
    • Go-Mart lets users shop from over 20 types of stores, including minimart, supermarket, office supplies, optical & eyewear, even pet shops. Purchases are delivered for IDR 10,000.
    • Also entered a partnership with Indonesia state energy firm PT. Pertamina to deliver fuel, gas and automotive lubricants.

    October, launched Go-Box, a large goods delivery service; Go-Glam, a beautician booking service; Go-Massage, a masseuse booking service; and Go-Clean, a professional cleaner booking service; Go-Busway, a bus system integration service.

    • Users can book a motorcycle taxi to take them to and from the nearest bus stop. The app also provides real-time bus schedules.
    • Part of Jakarta’s Smart City project.
    Expansion

    March, expanded to Bali island for local tourists.

    April, reached a network of 3,000 drivers in Greater Jakarta area, 500 in Bali and 500 in Bandung. June, expanded to Surabaya, the capital city of East Java and the second-biggest city in Indonesia.

    July, network reached 10,000 drivers. August, expanded to Makassar, the capital city of South Sulawesi.

    November, expanded to five new cities: Yogyakarta, Semarang, Medan, Palembang and Balikpapan. December, reached 4 million downloads.

    Fundings
    October, received funding from Sequoia Capital (India).
    Challenges

    December, temporarily banned by the Ministry of Transportation.

    • Go-Jek, along with other ride-hailing applications, was banned by Indonesia’s transport ministry on 17 December 2015. This provoked an online outcry and within hours, #SaveGojek was the top trending topic on Twitter in Indonesia. The ban was rebuked by Indonesia’s President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo on 18 December 2015, and reversed.
  • 2016 - Created e-wallet, boosted tech team, became a unicorn.

    Read in detail:

    Products and services

    January, partnered with Japanese instant messaging app Line, allows user to book a motorcycle-taxi via instant messaging.

    April, upgraded to e-wallet Go-Pay; released a major application update and new service, Go-Car.

    • Rebranded its cashless payment system from Go-Jek credit to Go-Pay, an e-wallet. Users can top up their Go-Jek credit using ATMs and online banking. The company partnered with three of Indonesia’s biggest banks – Bank Central Asia (BCA), Bank Rakyat Indonesia (BRI), and the Mandiri Bank – for this feature.
    • Made major changes to the Go-Jek app and rolled out a new service, the Go-Car, which allows users to book private car drivers.

    May, partnered with Indonesia’s largest taxi operator, Blue Bird, to allow users to hail Blue Bird taxis via the Go-Jek app.

    June, insurance company PT. Asuransi Allianz Life Indonesia launched an insurance program for Go-Jek motorcycle taxi drivers and their families.

    September, tested Go-Med, a medicine delivery service in partnership with pharmacy Apotik Antar. - For delivery of OTC medicines, vitamins and prescription drugs. - Users can upload photos of their prescriptions. October, rolled out Go-Auto, an on-demand auto mechanic service. November, introduced Go-Pulsa, a mobile credit purchasing feature in Go-Pay. Allows users to top up their prepaid phone credit using their Go-Pay balance.

    Expansion

    March, reached 11 million downloads; more than 200,000 drivers in their network.

    May, became a logistics partner of online marketplace startup Tokopedia. September, became a logistics partner of online marketplace startup BukaLapak.

    November, supported the Jakarta’s General Election Commissions (KPU) by displaying reminders to vote for the next Jakarta Governor on 15 February 2017.

    • Chosen by KPU due to the number of Jakarta residents using Go-Jek.
    Fundings

    August, raised more than US$550 million in a new round of funding led by KKR & Co. and Warburg Pincus LLC, the largest ever for an Indonesian technology startup.

    • Existing shareholders, such as NSI Ventures, Sequoia Capital (India) and DST Global, and other international investors, including Farallon Capital Management and Capital Group Private Markets, also participated.
    M&As

    February, acquired two Indian tech startups and established an R&D center in Bangalore.

    • Following outages in its overloaded system, Go-Jek bought over Bangalore-based C42 Engineering and Delhi-based CodeIgnition to beef up its technology.
    • Set to hire 100 engineers, programmers and data scientists in 6–12 months.

    September, acquired Indian healthcare marketplace Pianta to improve its engineering team.

    October, acquired e-payment company PonselPay.

    • Aside from PonselPay, only 20 companies are licensed to create e-money, including big banks such as BCA and Mandiri.

    November, acquired India-based app development company LeftShift Technologies.

    • LeftShift’s 42 employees will relocate to Bangalore and join Go-Jek’s engineering team there.
    Key personnel
    October, co-founder Michaelangelo Moran left Go-Jek to pursue his other interests.
    Challenges

    January, bug discovered in the Go-Jek application

    • Programmer Yohanes Nugroho reported he had discovered a bug in the Go-Jek application that threatened users’ privacy, exposing their names, contact information, and order history.

    March, anti-ride-hailing app protest turned violent.

    • A protest in Jakarta against online ride-hailing apps such as Go-Jek turned violent as taxi and other public transportation drivers clashed with drivers affiliated with ride-hailing apps.

    July, investor presentation leaked; several Go-Pay user accounts were hacked.

    • Included completed bookings and gross booking fare values since 2015.
    • The hack did not affect Go-Jek’s payment system as a whole.
  • 2017 - Over US$1 billion funding round led by Tencent; acquired Loket, Mapan and other fintech startups; investment in Bangladeshi startup Pathao

    Read in detail:

    Expansion
    November, Go-Jek was reported to have invested US$2 million in Bangladeshi ride-hailing startup Pathao.
    Fundings

    April, Go-Jek reported to have raised US$1.2 billion in a Series E round of financing led by China’s Tencent Holdings. The funds would be used to fuel Go-Jek’s international expansion and load its “war-chest”.

    • Over the following months, investors such as Google, Allianz, Astra International and JD.com confirmed their involvement in the round. In 2018, it was estimated that Go-Jek raised US$1.5 billion in funding, at a US$5 billion valuation.

    M&As

    August, acquired event ticketing and management startup Loket for an undisclosed sum. Loket’s team and operations continue to operate independently.

    December, acquired rural online-to-offline group buying startup Mapan, as well as payment startups Kartuku and Midtrans. The acquisition is meant to bolster its Go-Pay service.

    • Mapan’s founder Aldi Haryopratomo was appointed Go-Pay’s CEO, while the heads of Kartuku and Midtrans were given key appointments in the Go-Jek group.

  • Recent Developments

    With Uber’s exit from Southeast Asia, Grab remains Go-Jek’s strongest regional rival.

    Further afield, Go-Jek invested in Bangladeshi ride-hailing startup Pathao in a “pre-series B” round in April 2018.


  • Future Plans

    In May 2018, after Uber’s exit from Southeast Asia, Go-Jek announced that it would invest US$500 million to expand its business to Singapore, the Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam. The expansion in each country will be led by “local founder teams”, ensuring that Go-Jek can benefit from deeper market knowledge.

Updated: 05/2018

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