Jakarta, 14 June 2019 – A new survey conducted by SME Magazine reveals that boosting the engagement of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in Indonesia could help sustain the country’s economic growth. SMEs in Indonesia continue to grow, not withstanding global economic uncertainties and a more challenging marketplace.

“While the records set by these fast moving companies may not be representative of all SMEs, it dispels the myth that business has been difficult for SMEs in general in Indonesia,” said William Ng, group publisher and editor-in-chief of SME Magazine during the announcement of the survey results cum SME100® Awards ceremony.

Among the SMEs surveyed, revenue grew 9.3 per cent in 2018 to an average of 55.1 billion rupiah, while profit grew by 23.5 per cent to an average of 7.1 billion rupiah on the back of a strong domestic consumption. This is especially impressive given the 5.17 percent GDP growth for the whole country in 2018.

The SME100® team surveyed 2,000 top SMEs in Indonesia between February and April this year. Out of these, 29 fast moving SMEs are selected based on quantitative criteria such as revenue growth and profit, and qualitative criteria such as business outlook, investment in training, and R&D efforts, to receive the SME100® Awards. The project is conducted in partnership with Indonesian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KADIN) and Indonesia Business Council for Sustainable Development (IBCSD).

Among the award recipients are chatbot provider Kata.ai, food franchisor Orchi Fried Chicken, wedding and holiday planner Weddingku group, peer-to-peer financing platform Investree, digital wallet provider Payfazz, and lifestyle retailer Metroxgroup.

Indonesia is the third country in ASEAN to launch the SME100® Awards, after Malaysia and Singapore. Vietnam will be the fourth country with the survey currently being deployed across the country.

TECHNOLOGICAL DISRUPTION A MAJOR CONCERN FOR SMES

SMEs participating in the survey are both optimistic and cautious over the rapid pace of technological development and greater regional economic integration.

“Many SMEs continue to feel the heat from both technology-based disruptors in their industry and from regional competitors who are adopting technology to outpace them in the market. Almost every SME surveyed realises the importance of a digital strategy, but many do not have the resources or the capability to implement one. The Indonesian government has invested substantial time and money into helping SMEs in this aspect, but the adoption rate is far slower than ideal”, said Ng.

“SMEs here see the potential in being part of a larger economic community. This is less about the business regulations and tariff than it is about of the ‘softening’ of the regional markets due to greater awareness regionally for AEC. At the same time, many SMEs are concerned about the increased competition, and the associated risks of regionalisation”, Ng added.