September 28, 2021
Asia Business Editors' Pick Investing Markets Money Retail

Indonesia’s E-Commerce Unicorn Bukalapak Completes $400 Million Funding Round With New Investors: Report

Indonesian e-commerce unicorn Bukalapak is said to have attracted more investors in its latest funding round that raised more than $400 million, according to a report from DealStreetAsia. 

Bukalapak’s recent corporate filing indicates the London branch of Swiss investment bank UBS Group AG and Malaysian conglomerate Genting Berhad subsidiary Resorts World are among the latest backers, the report said. 

UBS AG London is apparently serving as a nominee for an unidentified client. The bank, which received the largest amount of shares during the funding round, is now holding a 2.5% stake in Bukalapak.

The fundraising came as Bukalapak is said to be preparing for an initial public offering as early as the third quarter of 2021. The Jakarta-based startup could be valued at between $4 and $5 billion in a potential merger with a U.S.-based special purpose acquisition company (SPAC), according to a recent Bloomberg report.

Market research firm CB Insights puts the value of Bukalapak at $3.5 billion. The company achieved its unicorn status in 2017.

The startup was founded in 2010 by Achmad Zaky and two of his friends from the Bandung Institute of Technology. Zaky stepped down from the role of chief executive in January 2020. He was replaced by Rachmat Kaimuddin, a former finance and planning director at PT Bank Bukopin. The other two cofounders, Nugroho Herucahyono and Fajrin Rasyid, also left their posts in 2019 and 2020, respectively. 

Bukalapak, which means “open a stall” in Bahasa Indonesia, helps the country’s millions of small mom-and-pop stores to sell their goods online. The company launched Mitra Bukalapak in 2017, which aims to provide services ranging from connecting kiosks to consumer goods distributors, bill payments and phone top-ups. 

The e-commerce platform now serves more than 6 million sellers and 90 million active users. In April, Bukalapak raised $234 million in a funding round led by Microsoft, Singaporean sovereign wealth fund GIC, Indonesian media conglomerate Emtek and South Korean web portal Naver Corp., according to a report from Reuters.