The Curious Case of T-Cash

This is series of study case analysis that i like to write from time to time.  I am a big fan of Ben Thompson’s Stratechery and this series of essay emulate his style of writing. Check out my first post on Traveloka.

This week in fintech, T-Cash state-owned e-wallet provider announced that they will transform into LinkAja. Not only the name change, the new T-Cash will be backed not only by Telkom group but also six other state-owned enterprise (SOEs) : Bank Mandiri, BRI, BNI, BTN, Jiwasraya and Pertamina. The change will be implemented late February and current T-Cash users will only need to update their app once LinkAja launched.

T-cash QR Payment feature. image credit from kanalaceh.com

Couple of interesting points from this.

Continue reading “The Curious Case of T-Cash”

Mengapa saat ini di Indonesia, startup fintech lebih banyak dibanding startup lain

Ini sebenarnya adalah thread Quora yang saya jawab beberapa waktu lalu Karena responsnya cukup bagus, saya menambahkan beberapa materi dan memposting ulang disini.

Platform Quora ini cukup menyenangkan dan saya aktif disana. Cek kesini 
untuk melihat semua jawaban yang saya tulis.

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Lanskap fintech di Indonesia. Gambar dari Convergence Ventures
Continue reading “Mengapa saat ini di Indonesia, startup fintech lebih banyak dibanding startup lain”

Three Great Business Books To Start Your 2019

I cant believe how fast 2018 have been going for me. I went lot of new challenges, good thing most of them turn out quite well. In 2018, I’ve ventured into new areas at work, managed bigger team and took terrifying steps into the big financial commitment (i bought a house on mortgage). Been hell-a-lot of personal developments which was exciting and scary at the same time.

Three good books i recommend to read

Speaking of personal developments, ill share top three great books that I’ve read last year with interesting points from each. These books helped me find perspective and calmed me down during roller coaster ride. I hope this list give you ideas on what to read to start your 2019 right.

Lets go!

Continue reading “Three Great Business Books To Start Your 2019”

Vlog KomunIKASI

Jumat minggu kemarin, saya bertemu dan ngobrol dengan salah satu junior di kampus Sistem Informasi ITS dulu : Diaz Permana. Pertemuan ini sebenarnya random sekali diawali dengan saling mereply di grup Ikatan Alumni Sistem Informasi dan kemudian Diaz mengajak untuk ketemuan offline. Kebetulan, seminggu kemarin saya sedang di Surabaya untuk keperluan ekspansi Amartha. Kebetulan kedua, saya juga penasaran dengan Ternaknesia, startup agritech tempat Diaz bekerja sekarang. Maka ngopilah kita berdua di sebuah cafe di Manyar.

Yang menarik, Diaz mengajak untuk merekam pembicaraan dalam sebuah vlog. Diaz sedang membuat vlog tentang Ikatan Alumni Sistem Informasi. Dia ingin membuat konten untuk memudahkan mahasiswa SI berpikir dan merencanakan karir setelah kuliah nanti.

Ini adalah kali pertama saya merekam vlog, kegiatan yang sangat milenial, dan saya khawatir diskusi menjadi canggung. Namun Diaz berhasil membawakan sesi tanya jawab ini dengan luwes sehingga obrolan kita berdua tidak berbeda dengan diskusi  seperti biasa tanpa kamera. Wajar sih, Diaz semenjak kuliah sudah berpengalaman menjadi host dan moderator.

Simak obrolan kami berdua seputar alumni Sistem Informasi ITS, hal yang dilakukan pada saat kuliah dan hal hal lain di youtube link dibawah.

Berhubung diskusi ini terjadi secara spontan, ada beberapa tambahan informasi yang saya gatal ingin tulis disini. Tonton dulu videonya, lalu sila menyimak beberapa poin tambahan jawaban atas pertanyaan-pertanyaan seru yang di lontarkan Diaz di vlog. Continue reading “Vlog KomunIKASI”

Guest Lecturing in Information System ITS

Ive spent the whole last week working in Surabaya. The project that im working on is on expansion mode, hence i went around several areas in East Java to monitor and support that implementation. I had spare time on Friday afternoon, so i linked up with my senior in college, mas Nisfu, which is currently department head of my almamater. After few chit chat, he invited me to guest lecture in Leadership  and Communication Class. Offered such a great honor and opportunities, i didnt wait a second to say yes.

To keep my topic relevant to the class, i decided to talk about how students can better prepare themselves for job hunting. I wrote about this couple years ago here hence i just need to make slides out of it with updated content and context.

In summary, i talked about how the rising of digital ecosystem in Indonesia made these current and upcoming years the best time to be IT students. However, there are also thousands of IT graduates which will be competing for a job hence by graduation, they need to be already “job-ready”. Then i described the concept about “job-ready” (inspired by Joel Spolsky post ) and several things students can do in college to setup themselves to be job-ready.

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The class was amazing. It was probably the most enjoyable teaching experience i had since god know when (i teach class occasionally, so its a hyperbole). All of the student are still in their 2nd semester (2017 class). I was little bit pessimistic at first because material about jobseeking preparation probably wont be exciting for freshman students. However, i was blown away by the enthusiasm and quality of questions they asked.

These are some of the questions they came up with :

  • What is the difference between working in established companies and startups ?
  • Is this rising digital trend going to last ? what happen with job prospects when the trend fades ?
  • If i want to work for Tesla, what should i prepare right now ?

This is pretty amazing coming from second year students. Couple of times i was taken a back and need couple of seconds to digest and think for the answer. These ITS Information System millenials really exhilarates me, cant wait to meet them again someday.

Also, since i went to Surabaya on a company’s dime i also did not forget to slip in some messages from my corporate startup overlord.

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were looking for cool interns!

Were looking for students from any background who wants to experience working in fintech startup and contributing to a positive social impact. Interested ? send your cv to that email address or you can just contact me by commenting in this blog. 

In the end, teaching is really fun, i should do more of these. . Thank you mas Nisfu for the opportunity to teach. Thank you Information System class of 2017 for the enthusiasm and energy, you guys rock!.

My presentation for this class is available for download here. 

Adapting Into My New Job in Amartha

Since coming back home to Indonesia, ive been working in a fintech startup called Amartha. Amartha is a peer-to-peer lending platform targeting unbankable populations in rural Indonesia. Inspired by Grameen Bank, loan was disbursed through group-lending mechanism and all of Amartha’s mitra (lender) is exclusively women.

My time here has been great so far, the company value resonate with me , i have a good team and im learning so much day by day. However the business model, the industry and startup environment is completely new to me hence i need jam lot of knowledge just to stay afloat.

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Amartha’s field officer (Anis) and operation analyst (Icha) was testing Amartha Go android apps for one of lender a.k.a mitra

Another thing that forced me to learn many things at once is my double role in Amartha. I am currently responsible for Amartha Go, initiatives to optimize our loan-collection process using combination of agency model and android apps. At first, I was responsible for business direction of this initiatives. However, the product manager resigned, hence i took those responsibilities. Hence not only i am managing a strategy team, i also need to manage team of developers as well.

In this post, i will share several resources which have been helpful so far in speeding up my adaptation process. Hopefully it will be useful for you as well. Continue reading “Adapting Into My New Job in Amartha”

Blockchain Skeptics

In the midst of block chain hype, i read an HackerNoon article which reminds us that one (or plenty) dose of healthy skepticism regarding the technology is necessary.

Kai Stinchombe elaborates many points on why blockchain characteristics (distributed, encrypted and anonymous ledger) might not be best suited to “revolutionize” many of the hypothethical use cases of this technology.

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Image credits

Really enjoy this article. I share some of the pessimism regarding this technology. One of my team mate is really excited to research block-chain on one of our business problem, but i still havent convinced yet because i felt like that is merely a ledger problem which will be overkill to solve it using distributed ledger.

Read the full article here, do make sure to read the comment discussion as well since there are many contrarian points which adressed nicely by Kai.

Here are some of the highlights :

On payments and banking :

– For processing payments, Visa currently can handle 60k transactions per second while blockchain-enabled Bitcoin current maximum is 7

– With 0.01% performance, Bitcoin estimated to use 35 more electricity than VISA

On Anonymity and freedom from government overreach

– Government-backed banking system provide guarantee, reversibility, identity verification, audit standards and investigation system. Bitcoin on the other hand has none hence Bitcoin is akin to banking institution in the middle-age

On Smart-contracts

– Smart-contracts are self-executing contracts which can be encoded in block-chains

– Theoretically, Smart Contracts are more cost effective than “dumb contract” because they will execute the clause automatically with no ambiguous interpretation

– Dumb contract are better and safer because of their “slow” nature. it makes it possible for human intervention and leave room for debate from both-sides of contract

On blockchain as distributed storage, computing and messaging

– Blockchain as distributed storage seems make sense : break document up into “blocks”, encrypt, and put them in a distributed ledger

– However current common solution for this (Dropbox, GDrive) is better in many ways : multiple factor authorization instead of private keys, price and features

On blockchain as stock issuance (ICO)

– Primary role of government-backed stock exchange (e.g Nasdaq) is compliance and security provider. Taking these factor out of stock-issuance is a recipe for daylight robbery

On blockchain as authenticity verification

– Other usecase for blockchain is to make public, unalterable, undeletable statement published publicly

– However, in blockchain, there are no way to delete the records or override the transaction

– Adopting block chain technology makes theft or impersonation more likely rather than less

 Conclusion

– Advantage of existing existing human and software systems surrounding transactions outweigh promised benefits of blockchain as well as hidden costs, of irrevocable, automated execution

– With all the hype, nobody currently asking questions whether current user of existing system (payments, credit card holder) are seeing the benefit of blockchain