Indonesian fitness studio RIDE Jakarta today announced that it has raised US$500,000 in seed funding round led by Intudo Ventures, with participation of East Ventures and PT Prasetia Dwidharma.

RIDE Jakarta started off as a fitness studio that offers indoor cycling classes.

In addition to talent acquisition and expansion, the company will use the new funding to digitise its business by launching a mobile app that will allow users to enjoy classes remotely. The content will be offered on a freemium basis.

“Essentially, RIDE is a physical experience. It is an instructor lead – music and rhythm inspired – classroom experience. This naturally ties us to the offline aspects of our business. However, the introduction of our mobile app will bring a new angle to our business. It will extend our reach beyond the four walls of our studios – making it accessible to virtually anyone with a mobile gadget. Infrastructure problems in Jakarta and heavy traffic have made attending classes tough for many people, hence we built this to help solve that issue,” RIDE Jakarta Founder, CEO, and CRO (Chief Ride Officer) Gita Sjahrir explained in an email to e27.

RIDE Jakarta was founded in April 2015 by Sjahrir with co-founder and COO Adhit Lesmana.

This latest funding round followed a US$250,000 pre-seed funding round the company has previously raised.

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Currently operating three studios in the city, RIDE Jakarta plans to open at least four new locations in the Central and South areas. By 2020, it aims to expand across core markets of Jakarta and Bali, and establish a studio presence in Surabaya, Medan, and other localities.

RIDE Jakarta also plans to add more fitness courses to its offerings, such as a bootcamp course that combines cycling and weight exercise, which it has begun to implementing.

From offline to online and vice versa

Many startups working in the O2O e-commerce sector are facing the challenge of making sure that each element of the business does not sacrifice or cannibalise the other; Sjahrir believes that for the company, it is not a concern.

” … The essence of our classroom experience is not something that is easily replaced or compressed into a phone. It is true that many things can be replicated on a screen, but the classroom atmosphere and our studio community, such as: the friendly front desk person who knows your name and helps you with your bike set up, is the one aspect that will keep our loyal members coming back to classes; the one aspect that could also drive our online traffic to our offline studios,” she said.

Sjahrir also named the ability to bring the culture and community that the company has built offline to its online platform as the most important lesson that it has learned in this process.

“For the last three years our loyal customers appreciate and help build our lifestyle brand and culture. But now that we’re moving online, we’re working to maintain our personality and extend our hospitality to customers we might never meet in person,” Sjahrir closed.

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In the Indonesian market, startups working in the sports and fitness sectors include gym and sports venue booking platform DOOgether and futsal blog Bolalob.

Intudo Ventures was launched in June 2017 with a more than US$10 million fund. With Go-Jek co-founder Michaelangelo Moran, it has recently announced an investment to used car marketplace BeliMobilGue.co.id.

Participating investors East Ventures has launched its US$30 million fund for Southeast Asian startups focussing on Indonesian market last September; it has recently launched New Retail project Warung Pintar.

Prasetia Dwidharma has been known to invest in various Indonesian startups such as language learning platform Squline, online marketplace for handcrafts Qlapa, and in-store engagement platform Pomona. It has also invested in Singapore-based social dining platform BonAppetour.