Old Notes Unpublished: Start Up Spending and Gojek Phenomenon

I read this link

https://www.techinasia.com/silicon-valley-spends-money-people-asia-spends-marketing/

Yes. See how Gojek spend millions just to market their product, while their product itself are made by fifth grader.

Okay this is a very long post

Once I was interviewed for a new start up, Snapcart. I met the founder, which has a long hours of experiences, beginning from working in consumer product industry for 6+ years, then moving on to boutique consultants, which introduced him to communication industries, and then moving on to run a big online marketplace which was acquired by OLX.

They were looking for someone who can run the tech team to develop and support their products, as a level of CTO. Certainly with me having only experience in consulting industry with 3+ years experience in only the same project all over the time, doing the same job which it has become a routines, was not a perfect person to sit on CTO chair.

I was interviewed by their venture, Ardent Labs. Funnily the one who interviewed me which was actually looking for a CTO, in the end became the CTO itself, as I heard that they failed to get the person they wanted. During interview, I was shown their prototype design, their ideas, and I saw how solid their idea is. They aimed to develop a fully sophisticated product with perfect quality.

Certainly they spent a lot to hire their CTO, which was a senior employee (years of experience overseas, and he is actually a foreigner too) in Ardent labs to run their plans. They are also hiring good tech person to fill the position as a team leader in their development team. And now you can compare how the quality of their product compared with Gojek which spent a lot of cash to market their product using discount.

Although the CEO and so-called Brand Director of Gojek has also long running experiences, was from consulting industries too, I can infer that they has a flaw in their business.

First, I peeked on the CEO/Co-Founder CV on linked in, and they said that they have been working on it since 2011. And guess when they release the app? 2015. 4 years of developing and the app is still buggy? Compared to Traveloka which starts a bit later than Gojek, has a way better products than Gojek, and we can see that Traveloka has evolved to a mature ecosystem. No wonder, Traveloka was developed by a Standford graduates, although he was young and at my age.

I heard from my friend that Traveloka is actually heading towards increasing their hitcount on their website then they can sell it in a very high price. But when I was interviewed by Traveloka, which was looking for person to fill the team of Product Manager, I saw different things. They are actually really evolving their products, and of course, their goal might not merely be only sell and dump like Disdus now Groupon, DealKeren then LivingSocial now IDontKnowWhatItsName. In their office, I saw what you can call it Googleplex in Slipi. A lot of tech team involved in their company, which surely no wonder that Traveloka apps either web or the mobile apps one are very freshly baked.

Guess how long Snapcart develop the app? When I was interviewed around April 2015, they said they have been developing about around 2/3 months, and they set to release about 2 months from April. The news covered the release about August 2015. So basically they only have 6 months to bake their app, yet their app is very freshly baked.

So I don’t know what happened behind Gojek company, but certainly I assume that they took wrong way to expand their business.

This article was written a year ago, way before the Gojek scandals with Go-Pay account brought up to the public recently. I sometimes use Gojek too in case Grab application doesn’t work/no driver available. But I’d rather not use the Go-Pay service as it seems very not-secure.

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