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Indonesia's Emtek Makes Digital Payment Service Acquisitions

Stakes in Doku, EDIK strengthen its mobile payment offerings

May 16, 2017 | Retail & Ecommerce

Indonesia-based media company Elang Mahkota Teknologi (Emtek Group) has acquired large stakes in two digital payment services in the country through its subsidiaries. Emtek now holds a 50% stake in payment service PT Nusa Satu Inti Artha (commonly known as Doku), as well as a 90% share of PT Espay Debit Indonesia Koe (EDIK).

The acquisitions were made through the company’s subsidiaries and were revealed in recent financial statements. The Doku acquisition was first reported by the Indonesian website Daily Social in October 2016.

Emtek is now solidifying its position as a leader in the digital payment sector in Indonesia. In April, the company partnered with Ant Financial to create a mobile payment service on BlackBerry Messenger (BBM), the messaging service that remains popular in Indonesia. (In June 2016, Emtek licensed the rights to operate BBM in Indonesia from BlackBerry.)

Indonesia is fertile ground for growth in digital payment services, such as those offered by Doku and EDIK.

Just as in India, credit cards have a low penetration rate, and consumers have a high reliance on cash. According to an April 2017 survey from DI Marketing, digital buyers in the country still largely rely on a variety of offline payment methods—such as paying at a convenience store and cash on delivery—to complete their online purchases.

Primary Payment Method Used for Digital Purchases by Digital Buyers in Indonesia, April 2017 (% of respondents)

Emtek is set to upset that reliance on cash, and its recent investments will help it toward that goal. Both EDIK and Doku are licensed by Indonesia’s central bank to manage electronic money and money transfers.

While it’s still unclear how Emtek’s relationship with the two payment services will unfold, it is likely that it will have something to do with BBM, which still has roughly 63 million monthly active users (MAUs) in Indonesia. In January 2017, JakPat surveyed mobile internet users in the country and found that 83.1% of them still used BBM.

BBM is working hard to become Indonesia’s WeChat—a messaging service that will grow to encompass several other internet services, such as ecommerce. In fact, the platform also brokered a deal with Indonesia-based online marketplace Bukalapak.com in December 2016 to provide ecommerce services via its app.

Rahul Chadha

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