May 12, 2022

Telkom VC arm, state-owned pharma launch $20m fund in Indonesia

MDI Ventures, the VC arm of Telkom Indonesia, has partnered with state-owned pharmaceutical company Bio Farma to create the Bio-Health Fund, an investment vehicle for early-stage and growth-stage startups in Indonesia’s biotech and healthcare industry. The two firms have prepared US$20 million for the fund’s first stage.

Through this partnership, startups will have access to Bio Farma’s resources as a pharmaceutical manufacturer and healthcare provider for a strong go-to-market strategy in the country. They will also be able to learn from MDI Ventures’ expertise in healthcare deals.

Honesti Basyir, president director of Bio Farma, added that the company is looking to expand its portfolio beyond vaccines and serums. “This Bio-Health Fund will increase Bio Farma’s capabilities in terms of innovating life science products, health tech products such as telemedicine, and so on. The ultimate goal is to form a national health ecosystem,” said Basyir.

The Indonesian digital health ecosystem is projected to hit US$3.7 billion by 2026 at a compound annual growth rate of 15.5%, according to Statista.

State-owned enterprises (SOE) deputy minister Pahala Mansury explained that after addressing the health sector, the Ministry of State Owned Enterprises will be encouraging partnerships between MDI Ventures and SOEs in the food sector – such as PTPN, ID Food, and Perhutani – to develop the industry. Following this, the ministry is looking to create a similar partnership focused on new energy.

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(Shadine Taufik/Tech In Asia)