JAKARTA (TheInsiderStories) – The Financial Services Authority (FSA) admitted the Singapore’ Sea Limited (NYSE: SE) has asked permit to become the shareholder of local lender, PT Bank Kesejahteraan Ekonomi (BKE). This was made by the parent of e-commerce operator, Shopee, to enter the digital banking business in Indonesia.
The statement delivered by the executive director at FSA, Anung Herlianto, in a virtual press conference on Thursday (02/18). He said, to support the development of digital banking in the country, his office now finalize the regulation and is targeting to be completed in the middle of this year.
The news Sea Limited became the BKE’ shareholder has surfaced since mid-January of this year. End of last year, the Singapore’ firm has awarded a license to operate a digital full bank from the Monetary Authority of Singapore.
“We are honored to be selected by the Monetary Authority of Singapore for the award of a digital full bank license and to have the opportunity to offer digital banking services addressing the underserved financial needs of young consumers and SMEs in Singapore,” said Forrest Li, chairman and group CEO of Sea on Dec. 10, 2020.
Through its three platforms, Shopee, Garena, and SeaMoney, the company has integrated into Singapore’ digital economy with young consumers and small and medium enterprise, he adds. Sea Group took over the shares of BKE from local businessman Setiawan Ichlas, namely PT Danadipa Artha Indonesia and PT Koin Investama Nusantara, a joint venture between conglomerate, Martua Sitorus, and the company.
Currently, Sea also is rumoring to acquire another local lender, PT Bank Capital Indonesia Tbk (IDX: BACA) and PT Bank Bank Bumi Artha Tbk (IDX: BNBA). The commercial banks is in Book II category with a core capital less than Rp2 trillion (US$142.86 million). Based on FSA regulation the commercial bank must have a minimum capital of Rp3 trillion by the end of 2022.
Beside the group, the other tech company, GoJek has invested in PT Bank Jago Tbk (IDX: ARTO) through its payment and financial service unit, GoPay, by acquiring around 22 percent the lender shares. In 2019, financial technology firm, Akulaku, also acquired PT Bank Yudha Bhakti Tbk (IDX: BBYB), and changed the name to Bank Neo Commerce.
The small bank was founded in 1992. Previously, BKE shares were held by PT Reliance Sekuritas, PT Jasa Raharja Pension Fund, PT Asuransi Jasa Indonesia Pension Fund, and BKE Employee Cooperative.
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