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Indonesian Start-ups Impress Australian VCs in Speed Dating Event

TEKNO, ruber.id – Indonesia is a country with a vibrant start-up scene that continues to attract international investment.

Home to more than 2,200 start-up companies, including four unicorns and a decacorn, Indonesia is among the top five countries with the most start-ups in the world.

Even as the pandemic continues to grapple the country, Indonesia’s start-ups are still witnessing strong venture capital investment, a sign of investor confidence in the largest SME market in Southeast Asia.

The growing start-up ecosystem has long caught the attention of hungry investors from countries such as China, Singapore, the US, and Japan.

There has also been growing interest in recent years from Australian venture capital firms, aligning with the two countries’ long history of trade relations and strong people-to-people links.

Indonesian payment gateway company Xendit has sought to encourage this trend, and recently organised a virtual speed dating event that hosted meetings between 50 Indonesian investment seeking tech start-ups and 7 Australian venture capital investors.

360 Lightning Speed Australia-Indonesia Start-up Virtual Speed Dating was held over the course of eight days and supported by the Australian Trade and Investment Commission (Austrade) and the Alumni Grant Scheme (AGS), administered by the Australia Awards in Indonesia.

The speed dating event started with individual consultation sessions, held from 18 to 20 August, 2021.

In this stage of the event, consultants from consulting house PrepareLabs gave each of the start-ups constructive feedback on their pitch deck.

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In the speed dating sessions, held from 23 to 27 August, 2021, start-ups showcased their business plans to prospective investors in a 10-minute, one-to-one pitch.

Luthfi Juharta, Xendit’s Business Development Experiment & Partnership, said that the event aimed to introduce the Indonesian tech start-up ecosystem to the Australian venture capital ecosystem to hopefully forge a stronger relationship between the two.

“We hope after this event, more Australian venture capital firms will participate in similar events in the future and, as they continue to watch closely our start-up scene, show more interest in investing in Indonesian start-ups,” Luthfi said, adding that Xendit, the fastest growing digital payments infrastructure for Southeast Asia, held 360 Lightning Speed to help empower SMEs in the country.

Austrade’s Trade and Investment Commissioner to Indonesia, Hannah Wade, said in her opening remarks in the speed dating event on Monday, August 23, 2021, that by supporting the event, Austrade aimed to give Australian and Indonesian businesses a chance to grow together for the future.

“We hope that today will be a start for conversations from many of you, not just around investment but other ways we can bring the Australian and Indonesian innovation and creativity sectors together.”

“Perhaps some of your meetings here today spark an idea, create a connection for the future, and for the Indonesian start-ups, perhaps it’s your chance to pitch for the first time to an international investor…. And for our Australian friends… perhaps a chance to learn more about the activities of entrepreneurs from across the archipelago here in Indonesia,” she said.

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The 360 Lightning Speed is fully funded by the Australian Government through Australian Alumni Grant Scheme and administered by Australia Awards in Indonesia.

The initiative has supported more than 230 projects, providing grants to alumni who have studied in Australia to run projects that demonstrate a benefit to the wider community.

Among the 50 Indonesian tech start-ups seeking investment through the speed dating event are aquaculture start-up ALGA Aquatech, rental marketplace CUMI, EWA provider PaidbaQ, digital financial advisory platform Halofina, and energy management solution Leastric.

Halofina’s CEO and Co-founder Adjie Wicaksana said he appreciated the opportunity that 360 Lightning Speed gave him to tell his story.

“This is such a valuable experience for us in Halofina to be able to introduce our company and tell our journey to Australian venture capitals. I hope there will be more events like this in the future that connect Indonesian start-ups with more international investors.”

Daniel Veytsblit, Investment Director of Investible, one of the seven Australian VCs taking part in the event said he was very impressed with the quality of the businesses in the speed dating event and would welcome an opportunity to speak again with the start-ups in the near future.

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“The ambition and talent within Indonesia’s blooming startup sector were on full display during this event.”

“The companies pitching were of high quality, and we look forward to further conversations as Investible continues expanding in Southeast Asia.”

“Most presentations provided a great overview of the company’s vision and mission including why the founders are best placed to solve the problem, which is not an easy task in 5 to 7 minutes.”

“I’d love to follow up with many of the founders and finalize our conversations because 10 minutes is really not enough.”

“I appreciated the opportunity to meet all the founders and wish them all the best of luck in the next stage of their journey and beyond,” Veytsblit remarked.

The other Australian VCs participating were Artesian, Investible, Hemisphere, Airtree Ventures, Arkblu Capital, and start-up hub Haymarket HQ.

The event was supported by 20 community partners, namely Kumpul, Connext, Apiary, CoHive, Innovation Factory, Alpha Momentum Indonesia, UMG Idealab, Modal Anak Bangsa, AWS, LPIK ITB, Startup Bandung, Teman Startup, Shinhan FutureLabs, Achmad Zaky Foundation, Plug and Play Indonesia, SIAP, Astra Ventura, Indogen, Union Space, Angin, Preparelabs, Startup4Industry, East Ventures, and SBM ITB. (*/rls)

Penulis: Ardini Maharani DS Editor: Bam

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