Behind the success story of GandengTengan, there are challenges and harsh realities faced by its founder, Betania Jezamin “Jezzie” Setiawan. GandengTangan is a financial technology company that currently focuses on providing online peer-to-peer (P2P) lending and embedded financing, especially for Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs).

According to Jezzie, a founder must realize that they will face a high level of uncertainty. GandengTangan has experienced that uncertainty. Starting from internal conflicts within the team, loss of funding support, difficulties in registering with the Financial Services Authority, and unexpected regulatory changes that affected their business merger and acquisition agreements. Therefore, according to Jezzie, resilience is an important factor in the journey to becoming an entrepreneur. 

“It is very important to recover from failure,” She said in a guest lecture session on Business Risk and Venture Capital at the SBM ITB on Wednesday (15/5). Jezzie is an alumnus of SBM ITB, majoring in Management class of 2009. Since 2015, he has started pioneering “GandengTangan.”   

According to Jezzie, being a founder should involve a mix of being confident and humble, setting achievable goals, recognizing and accepting failure as part of the journey, seeing every experience as a valuable lesson, and also being able to find creative solutions to problems. GandengTangan itself, said Jezzie, was formed due to concerns about the issue of poverty in Indonesia, which makes it difficult for MSMEs to find sources of funding for their businesses. 

Apart from that, GandengTangan sees the market potential of MSMEs. As the largest workforce absorber in Indonesia, MSMEs absorb 97 percent of the workforce and contribute to more than half of Indonesia’s GDP. 

As its business develops, GandengTangan also collaborates with other businesses and startups as providers of embedded financing on their platform. This partnership has provided an additional source of income for both partners and GandengTangan.

This company has received various awards and recognition, such as the winner of Telkomsel NextDev in 2015, the United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) Challenge Fund in 2018, and the Social Enterprise Grant Program from the DBS Foundation in 2018. In addition, GandengTangan has achieved various achievements during its establishment. They obtained international investment and grants, obtained a license from the Financial Services Authority (OJK), achieved 10-fold revenue growth in 2022, and recently succeeded in developing embedded financing with Application Programming Interface (API) integration.

According to Jezzie, becoming an entrepreneur can be a fun and satisfying journey. However, challenges were never an integral part of it. Jezzie also said that every time we fall and succeed in overcoming challenges, it does not mean that life becomes easier but that we become stronger.

Written by Student Reporter (Reyna Aszzura Rasyida, Management 2024)