Indonesia is drafting rules to apply VAT on digital goods and services

Indonesia is drafting value added tax (VAT) rules that will be applied on digital goods and services provided by offshore companies, according to a report by Reuters.

John Hutagaol, an official who heads the international department at the tax office, said that the country would need new “implementation rules to decide on the mechanism” for digital goods and services as they have no time or space restrictions, unlike physical goods.

Hutagaol added that the new VAT rules would be applicable to “e-commerce, content providers, startups and other internet-based economic activities”.

A study by Google and Temasek Holdings last year pegged Indonesia’s internet economy at US$27 billion and predicted that it will grow to US$100 billion by 2025.

Singapore-based fintech startup CredoLab to expand to Africa

Singapore-based fintech startup CredoLab has announced its expansion to the Sub-Saharan African fintech, bringing on three new clients in the region — two banks and a leading airtime credit provider.

The expansion comes on the back of the  African Development Bank’s new Africa Digital Financial Inclusion Facility (ADFI, an initiative designed to bring financial inclusion to 332 million Africans who remain underserved and excluded from the traditional banking sector.

Also Read: 3 fintech startups win the chance to pilot project with UNCDF

CredoLab’s digital credit scoring solution uses anonymous, non-personal, consented smartphone
metadata to predict the creditworthiness of users. With smartphone penetration in sub-Saharan Africa steadily increasing and predicted to double by 2025, the company expects to be able to capture a large part of this market.

“The growing penetration of Android smartphones and KaiOS smart-feature-phones currently outpaces the penetration of bank accounts in the continent,” said Peter Barcak, co-founder and CEO of CredoLab, in an official press statement.

“This presents an immense opportunity for fintechs like CredoLab to tap into behavioural data to assess the creditworthiness of any user and enable them to receive loans at fair terms, even in the absence of credit history,” he added.

CredoLab’s entry point into Africa was South Africa and the company expects to launch in Ghana, and Nigeria and Kenya in early 2020.

To date, CredoLab claims to have assessed over US$1 billion in loans issued by more than 50 lenders across 15 countries.

UnionSPACE set to opens in Jakarta’s domestic airport

Indonesia-based co-working space UnionSPACE has announced that it will set up a co-working space in Terminal 3, Soekarno Hatta Airport, which is Jakarta’s domestic airport. The venture was made possible through a partnership with Angkasa Pura Solusi, a foreign investment company that has ventures in areas such as airport consultation.

The new co-working space will be called APSpace.

UnionSPACE currently has seven locations in Jakarta and five locations across Southeast Asia, including Philippines, Thailand, and Malaysia. It is set to open locations in Vietnam, Singapore, Cambodia and China.

SaltyCustoms partners with StarNgage

Influencer marketing platform StarNgage by Hashmeta has announced today it has signed an MOU with Southeast Asia-based apparel branding platform YEEFU by SaltyCustoms.

The partnership will see the two companies jointly design youth-oriented apparel by leveraging the star power of more than half a million active personalities on Instagram — essentially producing licensed apparel.

Using YEEFU, creators can crowdfund merchandising projects. If they are able to hit a minimum pre-order quantity, Yeefu will manage the design, inventory, manufacturing process and last-mile delivery, while the creators will receive the earnings.

Also Read: Why the traditional story arc is obsolete for brands

“As the world changes and moves into the digital age, brands have more opportunities for fan engagement and conversation. Here at YEEFU, we exist to spread positivity and inspiration to the next generation,” said King Quah, Co-Founder of YEEFU. Their first line of merchandise will be announced on and released for sale on in August later this year.

Image Credit : amadeustx