Startup Goes Public: Does Indonesia Stand A Chance?

Startups are going to face exit at some point. There are several ways to enter the exit zone, whether an IPO, an acquisition, or a management buyout, startup company should decide what is best for them. Since the beginning, startups are considered as private companies until they start IPO. Initial Public Offering (IPO) is the first sale of stock by a company to the public.  So what is the deal with this IPO anyway?

Aside from the rules and regulations to follow, the company that is going to be public needs to send reports to institution. In the United States, public companies report to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) while Financial Services Authority or Otoritas Jasa Keuangan (OJK) and Indonesia Stock Exchange (IDX) are in charge in Indonesia until they set up the special board like SEC. The main reason why companies choose to go public is because it may increase its attractiveness to strategic buyers that will benefit the company. The question is, has any of startup companies in Indonesia ever gone public?

Goes Public Possibility

KinejaPay went public in US / KinerjaPay


KinerjaPay went public last year in United States Stock Exchange OTC Markets with company code QTC.QB. KinerjaPay is a premiere e-commerce service provider serving various segments of the Indonesian market. KinerjaPay has signed up more than 60,000 users, 20,000 products and 200,000 transactions since launching in February 2016 and has become the first Indonesian startup that went public in United States Stock Exchange.

Bukalapak and Kaskus are still in the preparation to go public in Indonesia. Bukalapak is country’s leading e-commerce platform while Kaskus is Indonesia’s largest online forum platform. Several other startups are also interested to become public companies. Tito Sulistio, CEO of the Indonesia Stock Exchange (IDX), confirmed plans to enable the listing of startups and that said officials are working on regulations.

Indonesia Preparations for IPO

Most of the rules and regulations to go public refer to traditional companies. It used to be private company with impressive track record that would be able to list as IPO. In the era where startups bloom, firms no longer needed strong financials and a solid history to go public. The challenge would be to adjust the rules and regulations for startup companies.

Indonesia is are still preparing rules and regulations that would make it easier for startups and Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSME) to join stock exchange through IPO. “We want to provide them an exit strategy through the capital market by creating the technology board,” said Rudiantara, Minister of Communication and Informatics of Indonesia.

Tito Sulistio, CEO of the Indonesia Stock Exchange, said that stock exchange is ready to welcome the startups that are going IPO. According to him, startups only need to have value asset at least 5 million rupiah and can make a projection of profit gain that would happen for a year or two. “For us, as long as the legal administrative is clean and according to the rules, it is possible. After all, it is investors who would decide whether the stock is worth buying or not,” he added.

Rani Eva Dewi

Startup enthusiast turned to journalist. Movies and series junkie. Recently discovered sophophilism.

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