AC Ventures and PwC unveil corporate governance playbook for tech startups

  • 79% of investors view ESG as central to their investment calculus
  • Playbook offers practical advice on foundational governance principles

Samira Shihab, Head of Value Creation at AC Ventures

AC Ventures, in collaboration with PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) Indonesia, has released a playbook on corporate governance tailored for tech startups. Anchored in the Indonesian General Guidelines for Corporate Governance, the playbook offers actional advice on accountability, transparency, sustainability, and ethical behaviour.

Central to the playbook's guidance is the 'Three Lines Model.' This framework consists of the Front Line, dedicated to managing daily operations and imminent risks; Risk & Compliance, which lends itself to oversight and other crucial components; and the Internal Audit, responsible for independent verification. Startups are encouraged to foster collaboration between these lines within their organizations.

PwC’s data shows that there has been a decisive shift in the investment landscape in recent years, with 80% of investors now cautious of "greenwashing" and 70% of consumers showing a preference for sustainable products. For startups set on integrating ESG principles, the playbook lays down a pragmatic roadmap. This involves consistent internal upskilling, fostering stakeholder dialogues, ensuring ESG criteria are integral in partner and vendor evaluations, leveraging technological advancements, nurturing collaborations, and championing transparency in all ESG-centric reports. PwC’s Global Investor Survey found that a remarkable 79% of investors view ESG as central to their investment calculus today.

From a financial standpoint, the playbook zeroes in on essential strategies. Startups are advised to maintain a prudent two-year funding buffer, channel efforts toward profitability, and wisely manage cash flow and capital investments, ensuring alignment with their overarching growth aspirations.

Michael Soerijadji, Founder and Managing Partner at AC Ventures, said, "This playbook underscores the importance of foresight and proactive measures. While tech startups in Indonesia, including our portfolio companies, consistently exhibit a vibrant entrepreneurial spirit, certain observable challenges and notable case studies serve as cautionary tales. These scenarios emphasize the significance of preventive strategies. With that in mind, AC Ventures and PwC Indonesia offer our combined expertise to guide founders in building solid structures, making informed decisions, and avoiding common pitfalls related to corporate governance.”

Yuliana Sudjonno, Partner at PwC Indonesia remarked, “Robust corporate governance is essential today. This playbook and our partnership with AC Ventures underscores our commitment to ushering startups into a future defined by integrity, agility, and unparalleled success.”

The playbook can be accessed here.


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