President Director of PT Astra International Tbk Prijono Sugiarto (second right), accompanied by the Director of PT Astra International Tbk Suparno Djasmin (right), President Director of PT Astra WeLab Digital Arta (Awda) Rina Apriana (left) and Founder & CEO WeLab Simon Loong (second left) at the Inauguration AWDA and Maucash Launch in Jakarta on Sept. 5, 2018 - Photo by PT Astra International Tbk

JAKARTA (TheInsiderStories) – PT Astra International Tbk (IDX: ASII), one of Indonesia’s largest diversified holding companies, through its subsidiary PT Sedaya Multi Investama, and WeLab, a leading technology enabler for consumer lending in China and Hong Kong established financial technology (FinTech) joint venture company, PT Astra WeLab Digital Arta (AWDA).

AWDA aims to provide financial products and solutions powered by advanced big data technology, which will help individuals achieve financial freedom through better and more efficient access to credit. The new entity also will offer mobile lending products to retail consumers and provide financial technology solutions to enterprise customers.

President Director of AWDA Rina Apriana in a press conference on Wednesday (05/09) in Jakarta said, the company got a capital injection worth of US$21 million from its holding company to develop the new business. She added, the company will explore 12 cities as a market for AWDA.

With accelerating smartphone user growth at a 10.5 percent CAGR through 2021, high internet connectivity (55 percent internet penetration rate) and a large, young population of digitally active consumers, Indonesia is an attractive market primed for FinTech innovation. AWDA aims to meet the credit demands of the market through its innovative mobile consumer lending platform.

AWDA has been officially registered to the Financial Services Authority and is expected to launch its mobile application Maucash in the third quarter of 2018. Maucash aims to provide a convenient and seamless purely online borrowing experience, enabling customers to quickly obtain credit anywhere and anytime.

AWDA also will leverage Astra’s renowned local brand, vast distribution network and strong presence in financial services and auto distribution and WeLab’s best-in-class proprietary credit technology and FinTech know-how to deliver innovative financial products to consumers in Indonesia.

“We constantly look to partner with industry leaders and we believe that WeLab is at the forefront of FinTech innovation. Through this partnership with WeLab, we want to offer cutting-edge solutions to empower individuals throughout Indonesia,” said Suparno Djasmin Director of Astra.

Simon Loong, Founder and CEO at WeLab also stated: “WeLab is very excited to expand our fast-growing business beyond China and Hong Kong to our third market, Indonesia. We believe our game-changing technology, combined with Astra’s operational experience running market-leading businesses in Indonesia and strong local presence, will allow us to redefine consumer lending in Indonesia.”

Astra has more aggressively this year to expand their business and seeking various opportunity in the country especially in infrastructure business. To gain the plan the publicly listed firm allocated investment Rp29 trillion (US$2.1 billion) this year including inject capital to ride-hailing firm Go-Jek.

The President Director Prijono Sugiarto has said the decision made followed the investment realization recorded higher Rp23 trillion than initial planned Rp15 trillion. He believed going-forward business in Indonesia will grow well and Astra would like to take part in it.
This year Astra decided to escalate its capital expenditure to around Rp30 trillion (US$2.07 billion) from initial planned Rp29 trillion for business expansion. With a strong net cash, Sugiarto said, the company’s have ability to fund this year’s investments.