BukuWarung raises Pre-A round, brings total funds to 8-Figures

7 July  2020

JAKARTA — BukuWarung, an accounting and credit management app for Indonesian micro-businesses that is part of Y Combinator’s current batch of startups, today announced its Pre-A funding round led by Quona Capital, a VC firm focused on fintech in emerging markets, alongside strong participation from existing investors East Ventures, AC Ventures, Golden Gate Ventures, Tanglin Venture Partners and Michael Sampoerna. Founders of Snapdeal, who are investors in Khatabook, also participated in the round.

In Indonesia, 60 million MSMEs contribute over 60% of the country’s $1 trillion GDP, yet these businesses often rely on manual processes to do their accounting and repayments with customers. BukuWarung is an accounting app that helps micro-businesses to manage their cash and credit transactions. Merchants receive 3x faster repayments and see increased cash flow due to the automatic payment reminders sent by the app. The app tracks all transactions including credit, expense and sales, and helps merchants get cash flow visibility through business reports. To date, BukuWarung app has served more than 600,000 merchants across 750 locations in Indonesia.

“Micro-businesses have always been underserved in Indonesia, and have very little access to quality financial services,” says Abhinay Peddisetty, co-founder of BukuWarung. “Left behind by banks and financial institutions, business owners have long relied on pen, paper and calculators to track cash and credit transactions. Our vision is to build the digital infrastructure for 60 million MSMEs in Indonesia, which started with a simple accounting app and digital payments. Our lead investor, Quona Capital, has deep experience around financial inclusion in emerging markets, and is a great partner for us as we scale the digital infrastructure of Indonesia.”

Simple and seamless app

“As co-founders, we have experience in building products for micro-businesses in Southeast Asia,” adds co-founder Chinmay Chauhan. “We come from humble micro-merchant families ourselves and understand the challenges these businesses face in managing cash flow and accessing credit to grow their businesses. Our product is designed to work seamlessly for merchants who may not have a lot of space on their devices, or have lower-end devices or less data connectivity. With our focus on simplicity, we have served over 50 different categories of businesses, which includes mom and pop convenience stores, grocery stores, mobile top-up and electronics shops, wholesalers, traders, online sellers, and more.”

“Quona’s experience investing in companies serving micro-businesses across emerging markets—including standouts IndiaMART, Neon (Brazil), and Yoco (Africa)—has shown us how important their success is to the growth of inclusive emerging economies,” said Ganesh Rengaswamy, Co-founder and Partner at Quona Capital. “In this time of COVID-19, it’s never been more critical for businesses to migrate from manual tools to digital ones, and the solution BukuWarung has built not only allows underserved micro-businesses to focus on growth, it provides a platform to layer in additional services that benefit the businesses.”

Hyperlocal Economy

“Micro-businesses are the backbone of Indonesia’s hyperlocal economy,” said Willson Cuaca, Co-founder and Managing Partner of East Ventures. “As a market leader, the BukuWarung team is well positioned to drive the digital transformation of these micro-businesses with fast-paced execution.”

BukuWarung is the only Indonesian startup to be selected for the Y Combinator class of YC S20, which has been remote since the arrival of COVID-19. BukuWarung will participate in Y Combinator’s upcoming Demo Day on August 24, 2020. Y Combinator has also funded Indian startups Khatabook and OkCredit, which operate in a similar space; together, they have scaled to over 10 million merchants each and raised more than USD 150 million.