July 19 2023

P2P lending in Indonesia grows steadily

Peer-to-peer (P2P) lending has become a big industry in Indonesia in recent years, with an estimated 250 trillion rupiah (US$17 billion) loans disbursed in 2022, up from about 155 trillion rupiah (US$10.2 billion) in 2021. The first six months of 2023 saw a 28% growth in the P2P lending market, according to market research firm YouGov.

Given the continued growth of P2P lending in Indonesia, some of the more prominent companies are looking ahead to IPOs. For instance, Akseleran said in early July that it would seek to raise 359 billion rupiah (US$28.8 million) on the Indonesia Stock Exchange (IDX) next month. The company plans to use the fresh funds to acquire multifinance firm PT Pratama Interdana Finance.

While Akseleran is not yet profitable, its losses have been narrowing over the past few years, while revenue has been steadily rising. In 2022, it lost 22.4 billion rupiah, compared to 30.3 billion rupiah in 2021 and 54.7 billion rupiah in 2020. Revenue climbed from 18.2 billion rupiah in 2020 to 39.6 billion rupiah in 2021 and 71.4 billion rupiah in 2022.  

Meanwhile, a second P2P lender is also expected to go public soon. “The company’s valuation is approximately between Rp 300 billion and Rp 360 billion ($20 million-24 million),” OJK Commissioner Inarno Djajadi told reporters in Jakarta, referring to the unnamed P2P lending platform.

Interestingly, an increasing number of P2P lenders are expanding beyond their core business – much as e-wallets have move beyond payments in search of greater profits. While Investree, Alami and Modalku have invested in incumbent banks and converted them into digital lenders, KoinWorks increasingly focuses on lending to SMEs. Modalku CEO Ronald Wijaya said in May that his company treats itself “as a neo-banking player” instead of a P2P lender because “P2P lending is a smaller part of our group.”

One of the main reasons P2P lenders are branching out into new segments of financial services is that they want to bring down their cost of funding, which allows them to offer borrowers more favorable interest rates. By providing banking services, for example, P2P lending firms can lower their funding costs by taking deposits from the general public, something that is prohibited by OJK rules if they operate as pure P2P lenders.

Looking ahead, Indonesia’s P2P lenders will have to keep a close on eye on non-performing loans (NPLs). The NPL ratio reached 3.36% in May, the highest level since the pandemic. However, it still below the 5% metric which the OJK considers problematic.