The strongest alliances are formed in the toughest of times. With COVID 19 still ravaging a large part of the developing world (as developed countries like USA, UK and Canada continue to open up), many companies are struggling to get their businesses in order. Indonesia, the world’s 4th most populated country, is no exception, and the economic fallout in the region has been catastrophic. To allay some of this added pressure, the country’s biggest startups-Gojek and Tokopedia, have decided to merge and give birth to GoTo group, Indonesia’s biggest tech group.

Gojek, the ride hailing company, and Tokopedia, the country’s most famous e-commerce platform, will not pool their resources to help soar through this economic depression. Both companies will continue to work as separate entities, so there won’t be much of a change on the user side of things. However, they will now help each other to make business much easier.

The group will be lead by Gojek’s Andre Soelistyo and Tokopedia’s Patrick Cao who will serve as GoTo Group CEO and President respectively. Since the two companies will continue to operate as separate brands, Kevin Aluwi and William Tanuwijaya will retain their roles of Gojek and Tokopedia’s CEOs.

Gojek has been trying to form an alliance with Grab, its biggest competitor in the South East asian market, in an attempt to better its offering. However, Grab has decided to take a different route, and is looking to go public in the USA through SPAC merger at a valuation of $39.6Bn.

On the other hand, Tokopedia was already exploring an IPO by the end of the last year, but after Gojek’s talks with Grab fell apart, decided to form an alliance with the ride hailing service instead.

While Tokopedia was not Gojek’s first choice, the merger does provide huge dividends for the group. Combined, GoTo group had Total Group Gross Transaction Value (GTV) of over $22 billion in 2020, over 1.8 billion transactions in 2020 and a registered driver fleet of over two million as of December 2020. If that’s not impressive enough, it also has over 100 million monthly active users, and an ecosystem that encompasses 2% of Indonesia’s GDP.

GoTo Group will work to better Gojek’s current offerings, and also make an effort to make same day deliveries the new norm in Indonesia. Moreover, the group will also further develop its payments and financial services offerings to provide an enhanced financial experience to consumers, drivers and merchants while also expanding to reach more underserved segments in Indonesia.

“Today is a truly historic day as we mark the beginning of GoTo and the next phase of growth for Gojek, Tokopedia and GoTo Financial. Gojek drivers will deliver even more Tokopedia packages, merchant partners of all sizes will benefit from strengthened business solutions and we will use our combined scale to increase financial inclusion in an emerging region with untapped growth potential. For the consumer, GoTo Group will continue to reduce frictions and provide best in class delivery of goods and services. This is the next step of an exciting journey and I am humbled and proud to lead the GoTo movement,” said Andre Soelistyo, CEO of GoTo Group, in a statement.

“GoTo Group will make it easier for people from all walks of life to access quality products and services, anytime and anywhere. We still have a long way to go to achieve our goals, but today is about starting that journey together,” said Tokopedia’s Co-founder and CEO William Tanuwijaya.