AirAsia Digital Buys Gojek’s Thailand Operation for $50m

AirAsia is committed to expanding its super-app footprint in Southeast Asia and has acquired the Indonesian ride-hailing and payments company Gojek’s business in Thailand.

The purchase, made through AirAsia Digital, resulted from an all-share deal that gives Gojek a shareholding of $50 million.

AirAsia’s super-app is the airline’s lifestyle platform valued at around $1 billion.

According to AirAsia Group CEO Tony Fernandes, the partnership is a win-win deal and enables the company to turbocharge its ambitions within the sector.

“By taking on Gojek’s well-established Thai business we’ll be able to turbocharge our ambitions in this space to become a leading ASEAN challenger super app,” he said.

Fernandes added that now is the right time to take the group’s digital economy ecosystem to the next level.

The AirAsia super-app seeks to leverage its existing ecosystem services for merchants, passengers and customers while adding new groceries and beauty product offerings.

Furthermore, as part of its commitment to Thailand, it hopes to expand into new markets such as Chiang Mai and Phuket in the near future.

The Gojek app will work as usual for existing users in the capital until July 31, and there will be no redundancies in the transition.

Gojek drivers and traders will be invited to join the AirAsia super-app, which is expected to be available in August this year.

Its new partnership with AirAsia is part of the Indonesian unicorn’s realigned international strategy.

In May, the company revealed that it had invested $18 billion to create GoToGroup in collaboration with e-commerce leader Tokopedia.

The group has plans to go public in Jakarta and the United States with a market valuation of $30-40 million.

Gojek CEO Kevin Aluwi referred to the deal with AirAsia Group as “a testament to the accomplishments” and team achievements in the kingdom.

“The deal will enable us to pivot our focus in international markets towards Vietnam and Singapore, markets providing us with the best return on investment and strategic growth opportunities,” it said.

AirAsia and Gojek do not rule out the possibility of teaming up in the future to expand other businesses in Southeast Asia.