GIC leads investment round in Indonesian robo-advisor fintech: Report

A bundle of Indonesian rupiah notes. Photo by Mufid Majnun on UnsplashA bundle of Indonesian rupiah notes. Photo by Mufid Majnun on Unsplash

This item originally ran on finews.asia

Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund GIC has led an investing round in Indonesian robo-advisor Bibit, according to a DealStreetAsia report.

Bibit raised more than US$80 million in the round, which was led by sovereign wealth fund GIC, and joined by Prosus and other previous investors, the DealStreetAsia report said.

Previous investors in Bibit have included Tencent, Sequoia Capital India, East Ventures, Harvard Management Co., AC Ventures and 500 Startups, according to Crunchbase data. The company raised US$65 million in May 2021, the data showed.

The funds are earmarked for launching new products and services, developing new technology and for hiring more talent, the report said. Currently, Bibit’s services include acting as a robo-advisor for helping first-time investors build a portfolio, including investments in mutual funds, or unit trusts, the report said.

Market potential

The potential for attracting new wealth management customers in Indonesia is huge. Indonesia is the world’s fourth most populous country, with around 274 million people. The economy had boosted itself to upper-middle income status by 2020, but the pandemic pushed it back to lower-middle income status in mid-2021, according to the World Bank, which noted a recovery is afoot.

Financial services inclusion in Indonesia remains relatively low, despite the Covid-19 pandemic boosting acceptance and use of digital financial services.

According to data in the 2019 Google, Temasek and Bain e-Conomy report, published pre-Covid, Indonesia had 92 million unbanked adults and 47 million who were underbanked, or who had a bank account but no access to credit, investments or insurance. Indonesia’s total population was around 273.5 million in 2020.

The 2020 e-Conomy report showed Indonesia posted a 44 percent on-year increase in the use of selected mobile banking apps for the January-to-September 2020 period.