Julo raises seed funding led by Skystar
By Yunnie Marzuki July 20, 2017
- Funding to be used for business and product development
- Aims to reach 10,000 users within a year
INDONESIAN peer-to-peer (P2P) lending startup Julo raises undisclosed seed funding led by Skystar Capital, East Ventures, and Convergence Ventures.
Julo co-founder Adrianus Hitijahubessy tells Digital News Asia (DNA) via email that the funding will be primarily spent on product development, machine learning investments, team development, and distribution.
Julo is a digital platform with a focus on financial inclusion. The startup provides unsecured personal loans to borrowers. They partner with institutional lenders as loan capital providers.
Its other co-founders are Hans Sebastian, and Victor Darmadi, who met during their time in the Silicon Valley.
Adrianus is a seasoned financial technologist with global experiences in risk management, data analytics, and applied Artificial Intelligence (AI) in various industries including finance, consumer credit, and e-commerce.
Hans is long-tenured Silicon Valley engineer with experiences in infrastructure, software development and QA in Big Data analytics company.
Victor is a German-educated full-stack software engineer previously working in Germany and Silicon Valley with diverse skillsets in backend engineering, database and data architecture.
The idea for Julo started when Adrianus was building AI-based credit scoring solutions in emerging countries in his prior company.
“As successful as it was, I realised that instead of helping consumers in Latin America and African countries gain access to credit, I should be helping people in my home country.
“Indonesia is the perfect seedbed for the right-minded fintech lending company to flourish. The country has a large segment of the population at the base of the financial pyramid and low consumer credit liquidity, catalysed by rapid technological and infrastructural transformation in the past few years. After living abroad for 20 years, I decided to move back to Indonesia and build Julo with my co-founders,” he explains.
Convergence Ventures partner Donald Wihardja says that fintech is an exciting sector to be in as it has a great impact on Indonesians who are under-financed by banks.
“Julo's approach is especially important as it uses alternative data to responsibly assess risk for people with no other ability to get loans,” he says.
Targeting “employed millennials” as potential users, Julo generates revenue from a provision fee from borrowers and service fees from lenders.
Adrianus hopes his company will reach the critical mass of 10,000 borrowers within a year and accelerate its credit scoring engine’s development.
When being asked about the strategy to reach these users, Adrianus explains that digital advertising and referrals play crucial parts.
According to East Ventures managing partner Willson Cuaca, “The way Julo assesses consumer credit worthiness is pretty unique. The founding team has prior experience of this vertical in other markets.
“We believe that will accelerate product customisation for the Indonesia market.”