Indonesia’s Go-Jek Expands in Southeast Asia

Grab, ride-hailing, ASEAN, Go-Jek

The merge between Grab and Uber is seen as an opportunity for expansion for the Indonesia-based ride-hailing company Go-Jek.

Indonesian ride-hailing and online payment company Go-Jek is ready to expand to other countries in Southeast Asia as the company sees opportunities to step into the void left by Uber in the region.  The move was announced by Go-Jek Chief Executive Nadiem Makarim. The company expansion plans are probably in line with the strategy of two of Alphabet Inc’s Google and China’s Tencent Holdings which are backing Go-Jek.

The company will enter four countries in Southeast Asia: the Philippines, Thailand, Singapore and Vietnam for a start and plan to invest up to US$500 million over the coming months to “grab” a part of the ride-hailing cake.

The move will start with ride-hailing services before expanding to other sectors, Go-Jek said in a statement. “People in Vietnam, Thailand, Singapore and the Philippines don’t feel that they’re getting enough (choice) when it comes to ride-hailing,” CEO Nadiem Makarim in a statement as quoted by News agency Reuters.

In Indonesia, Go-jek not only provide ride-hailing services but also food, grocery or laundry delivery as well as cleaning services and bill payments. “We hope that, as we arrive in new markets, we will become rapidly everyone’s go-to-life style app,” added Go-Jek CEO. “In the meantime, we hope our presence will provide the welcome competition markets need to thrive.”

Go-Jek said it was working with regulators and other stakeholders across the region to prepare for the new operations.

The expansion follows Go-Jek’s latest round of fundraising, which brought investment from companies including Astra International, JD.COM, Tencent and Temasek.

The announcement is certainly welcomed by most countries in the region which felt worries by Grab’s monopoly emergence following the merge with Uber technologies operation in Southeast Asia. Competition will then be back and should definitely do good for both locals and visitors.

(Source: Reuters)