Gojek plans to continue expanding outside of Indonesia this year, says Co-CEO


Bicycle passengers wear helmets with the Gojek logo.

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SINGAPORE – Start-up Gojek plans to expand its business beyond its home base in Indonesia this year, Co-CEO Kevin Aluwi said on Wednesday.

“One of our main priorities for 2021 is to expand our presence outside of Indonesia,” Aluwi told CNBC’s “Squawk Box Asia” as part of the network’s coverage of the Davos agenda.

“We have definitely invested relatively small amounts in our markets outside of Indonesia in recent years. However, we believe that this year we really want to spread our wings and be a regional and global company,” added Aluwi.

Gojek started with Ride-Hagel in Indonesia in 2010 and has since branched out into other business areas such as grocery delivery, digital payment and logistics. It is now present in more than 200 cities in five Southeast Asian countries, but Indonesia remains its main market.

Aluwi stated that some of the other countries the company does business in appear to have recovered more from the coronavirus pandemic.

While Southeast Asia’s most populous country has put in place a mass vaccination program, Indonesia is still struggling to get the virus under control – cases of infection have topped 1 million, according to Johns Hopkins University.

According to Aluwi, most of the companies in Indonesia are going through a difficult time including the severely affected transportation services. While Gojek has also felt the crisis, he attributes “significant growth pockets” to the company’s diversification in grocery delivery, grocery delivery and logistics.

The pandemic has pushed people around the world to shop online and choose delivery rather than going to restaurants or supermarkets to minimize exposure to the virus. Even if vaccination programs are rolled out around the world, some experts have stated that changes in consumer behavior will continue after the pandemic is controlled.

Gojek is also reportedly in talks with Indonesian e-commerce provider Tokopedia to seal a $ 18 billion merger ahead of possible IPO plans, Reuters reported this month. The deal could help Gojek take over regional competitors like Singapore-based digging and internet company Sea, which operates the Shopee e-commerce platform and has a market cap value of around $ 110 billion.

Aluwi declined to comment on what he called “merger speculation”, saying Gojek’s focus is to continue growing his business. He added that Gojek was “extremely optimistic” around 2021.

“We believe 2021 will be a year of growth, and most importantly, we have really invested in a lot of business, product and operational fundamentals in 2020 so profitability and long-term sustainability look significantly better year-over-year.” Year, “he said.

Gojek is worth $ 10 billion, according to CB Insights. Prominent supporters include Google, China’s Tencent, and Singapore’s state investor Temasek.