While global economy continues to go down deeper into turmoil and financial markets tank, SE Asian ride hailing giant GoJek has defied all of that, to emerge with a $1.2 billion mega financing round. According to an internal memo accessed by Bloomberg, the new financing was finalized just over the past week. Since past week, COVID-19 pandemic has wrecked havoc outside of China, hence making this deal even more noteworthy.
In totality, GoJek has now secured over $4.5 Billion in external financing (including this round), making it all set with a financial warchest that is decent enough, to take on Softbank-backed Grab.
GoJek’s recent round holds significance, not just due to its sheer size, but also due to the environment during which it has come in. Financial markets are continuing to tank globally amid the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak as investors become increasingly wary of putting their money in risky assets. The private equity/venture capital segment has also witnessed the impact, with deal activity plunging to one of the lowest in several years.
“We’re not stopping there as we are still seeing strong demand among the investment community to partner with us,” Co-Chief Executive Officer Andre Soelistyo and Kevin Aluwi told employees in the internal memo. “There are a number of exciting ongoing conversations that we will be able to update you on very soon.”
There have been rumours about a possible merger between two of Southeast Asia’s most valuable startups — Grab and GoJek. This additional capital will only add to GoJek’s leverage, even though it has categorically denied any such merger talks. Both have diversified their businesses from what they were when founded. Both are now trying to become ‘super apps’, aiming to handle everything for a consumer from ride-hailing to meal deliveries.