Raising millions of dollars, big acquisitions, digital transformation and securing digital-first customers—2021 has been nothing short of a rollercoaster ride for a certain sector in Indonesia.

No, it’s not edtech or any of the other sectors that boomed during the pandemic. The red-hot space in Indonesia this year has been banking—an industry that’s not traditionally associated with any of the above.

Over the last 12 months, a host of conglomerates and fintechs have bought stakes or straight up acquired local banks in Indonesia. Within the last couple of weeks alone, media conglomerate Emtek was planning planning The Jakarta Post Emtek to acquire Bank Fama in $63 million deal Read more to acquire Bank Fama for US$63 million, newly-minted unicorn Ajaib bought bought Katadata Ajaib acquired 24% stakes in Bank Bumi Arta worth IDR 745 billion Read more a 24% stake in Bank Bumi Arta for US$52 million, and eight-year-old Hong-Kong fintech WeLab announced announced TechCrunch Hong Kong fintech unicorn WeLab raises $240M to buy Indonesian bank Read more its acquisition of Bank Jasa Jakarta.

AUTHOR

Yunindita Prasidya

Based in Bali, Dita writes about Indonesia’s growing digital economy, including how technology is shaping the lives of young Indonesians and impacting traditional industries. She was previously a reporter at The Jakarta Post.

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