Fintech Investment in Indonesia, Is It Any Good?
Fintech is taking the world by storm, and that includes Indonesia, and investors are starting to notice. The Indonesian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (KADIN) has said that the country’s fintech industry is expected to receive up to $8 billion (Rp 105 trillion) of investments by 2018.
During Indonesia Fintech Festival and Conference in August 2016, Rosan Roeslani, chairman of KADIN said, the role fintech plays in the financial industry cannot be ignored, especially in creating and strengthening financial inclusion for the mass. In 2008, fintech investment in Indonesia stood at roughly $ 900 million, then propels to three billion in 2013, and is projected to reach $ 8 billion by 2018. But really, is it any good? Can it really make a positive impact?
Well, think of it like this. Big legacy banks don’t think about the consumers enough as their focus has always been to get as much money as possible from their clients. Do they think about social impacts they would make? Mostly, no.
Now think about about the new tech companies that are worth billions like Uber and AirBnB. These companies didn’t start out that way. They wanted to solve a problem, impact lives, and be an agent of change.
Fintech are basically like that. These companies does not aim to gain just profit, but they aim to make changes, to offer better solution, and most importantly to create social impact that can reconstruct our future into a better one. These are people and companies entering the space to create better systems, and ultimately making the whole financial world easier and more intuitive for consumers.
The Blossoming of Fintech in Indonesia
Southeast Asia’s largest market, Indonesia, has been witnessing an emergence of a number of fintech companies, one of them is peer to peer lending company MEKAR, which literally means “bloom”, that uses web platform and social media for its service.
MEKAR uses technology to improve access to finance for small businesses in Indonesia. Its mission is to engages wealthier Indonesians and/or anyone from all around the world to finance the less wealthy Indonesian entrepreneurs. What’s good about it is that the investors can directly make an impact in propelling the country’s economic condition.
The investors can help to create jobs and opportunities, and most importantly provides better future for the next generation.
What makes MEKAR different from other online lenders is that it only select Indonesian businesses that create and sell Indonesian products from local farmers and manufacturers, businesses that can make positive impact for children, women, and elders, as well as businesses that revolve around food production, education, health, and waste recycling. Investors can also personally handpick the business that they want to invest. And to help the investors to predict and minimize their investment risk, MEKAR also designed a generally simple rating system to give a brief summary about the degree of risk for the investors. With this transparent and real?time operation, MEKAR can also help to drive improvements in financial services, which can offer benefits to consumers and other sectors of the economy.
So by far, investing in fintech like MEKAR is arguably the most promising way to make a valuable impact on your financial wellbeing, as well as the lifes of others.