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Indonesia’s MNC Group to acquire a ride-hailing firm

Anterin, which has 300,000 drivers on its platform, will diversify its business after the acquisition.

Photo:Shutterstock.com

Indonesia’s MNC Group, through PT Indonesia Transport & Infrastructure Tbk (IATA), said on Wednesday that the company has signed a term sheet to acquire a majority stake of local ride-hailing firm, PT Anterin Digital Nusantara. The investment amount has not been made public.

One of MNC Group’s subsidiaries is a shareholder of IATA.

Compared to more familiar names like Gojek and Grab, Anterin’s scale and operations are still relatively modest. Founded by Imron Hamzah and Rachmat Efendi in 2016, the company began transporting passengers in 2018, and has not been particularly active in seeking capital from other sources.

Currently, Anterin has more than 300,000 drivers and 500,000 customers. It operates in 100 cities in Indonesia. Efendi, the company’s chief technology officer and co-founder, said the strategy adopted by Anterin is different from other ride-hailing firms’.

“We avoid the cash burn system. We use the auction concept. The drivers can decide their own prices. Customers also can have their own preferences, according to the price, vehicles, or drivers,” Efendi told KrASIA in a phone interview.

Anterin’s platform allows drivers and passengers to set and choose fare pries, with no set rate dictated by the company.

MNC’s investment is aimed to develop more types of business in Anterin, including food delivery, taxi service by collaborating with fleet operators, as well as car and helicopter rentals.

The acquisition of Anterin by MNC is parallel with IATA’s strategy to enter the on-demand transportation business, where Grab and Gojek remain the leaders in Southeast Asia.

“IATA chose Anterin due to its vision. Anterin was created to change the operation concept of ride-hailing firms that exist at the moment,” said Wishnu Handoyono, IATA vice president director, in a press release.

The transaction will be finalized at the end of February.

IATA is an aviation service provider. It operates some air transportation services—via helicopters, turbo propeller planes, and jets—which mostly serve oil and mining companies in long-term contracts. PT Global Transport Service, one of the subsidiaries of MNC, owns a 8.68% stake of IATA.