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Bukalapak raises new funds from Microsoft, eyes local listing, report says

Written by Ursula Florene Published on     2 mins read

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Bukalapak has reportedly hired Bank Mandiri’s securities arm to seek a merger with a US-based blank-check company.

Indonesian e-commerce company Bukalapak reportedly raised USD 234 million in a funding round led by Microsoft, Singapore wealth fund GIC, and Indonesian conglomerate Emtek. The company is currently planning to list on the stock exchange in Jakarta, according to Reuters.

The funding round also included participation from Standard Chartered’s investment arm, SC Ventures, as well as South Korean tech company Naver Corp, according to a sale document reviewed by Reuters.

Microsoft previously invested USD 100 million in the e-commerce unicorn in November 2020. As part of the deal, Bukalapak adopted Microsoft Azure as its preferred cloud platform. Earlier this year, Standard Chartered also announced a partnership with Bukalapak to provide digital financial services to the platform’s customer base.

Just like other tech companies in the region, Bukalapak has been inching toward going public. In early 2021, CEO Rachmat Khaimuddin told local media that this year is going to be the right time, as the company saw significant growth brought by the COVID-19 pandemic. The Reuters report added that Bukalapak has hired Bank Mandiri’s securities arm, Mandiri Sekuritas, before looking for a merger with a US-based blank-check company.

Bukalapak currently has 100 million users and 7 million partners, and was reportedly valued at more than USD 2.5 billion in 2019. The platform is facing tight competition from fellow e-commerce unicorn Tokopedia and Sea Group’s Shopee. In March 2021, Bukalapak was looking to enter the market in the Philippines.

The funding news came after Grab announced a merger with Altimeter Growth Corporation (NASDAQ: AGC) in a deal that will give the Southeast Asian company a USD 39.6 billion valuation. Rival Tokopedia is also reportedly close to a USD 18 billion merger with Gojek, along with a potential dual listing in Jakarta and New York.

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