Indonesia’s antitrust agency said it wants to take a look at the history-making merger between two of the country’s startups to guard against monopolistic practices.
As US News & World Report wrote on Thursday (May 20), the KPPU plans to scrutinize the multi-billion-dollar merger between the eCommerce company Tokopedia and the ride-hailing and payments company Gojek, the largest deal in the country’s history.
Once final, the merger will create the GoTo Group, the largest privately-held tech company in the region, a business providing — among other things — ride-hailing, couriers, financial services, online shopping and food delivery. Neither company had responded to requests for comment, the story said.
The KPPU said it will review the merger to “focus on various relevant markets in the GoTo Group ecosystem, as well as the potential for monopolistic practices or unfair business competition that can arise after the transaction.”
The agency said that digital market transactions usually involve a complex network effect analysis. The KPPU called on other business owners and members of the public to report violations of business competition rules once the GoTo Group is formed.
But even if the KPPU determines that the merger could lead to unhealthy business competition, that won’t derail the deal, U.S. News noted. Rather, the GoTo Group will be instructed to adjust its operations to promote fair competition.
In addition to creating a so-called super app and launching the biggest company in the region, this merger is also the largest between two Asia-based internet platforms. Gojek’s Andre Soelistyo will oversee the newly combined entity as GoTo Group’s CEO, while also continuing to lead payments and financial services under the new brand of GoTo Financial. Meanwhile, Tokopedia President Patrick Cao will become GoTo Group’s president. Kevin Aluwi will continue as CEO of Gojek and William Tanuwijaya will remain CEO of Tokopedia.
“Our goal has always been to build a company that creates social impact at scale, leveling the playing field for small businesses and giving consumers equal access to goods and services across the country,” Tanuwijaya said earlier this week, arguing that the merger will advance the Indonesian economy and make the wider world of the digital market more available to all.
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