Kopi Kenangan has officially become one of Indonesia’s Unicorns after successfully raising US$96 million or Rp1.37 trillion (exchange rate assumptions Rp14,300/US$) from the Series C funding round, led by Tybourne Capital Management and participation from several investors, such as Horizons Ventures, Kunlun, B Capital, and Falcon Edge Capital. This fund values the company to more than US$1 billion as of Wednesday (12/29). Kopi Kenangan’s Co-Founder and CEO, Edward Tirtanata, conveyed that the company will use the funding to expand its business network in Southeast Asia. He felt content with this fundraiser announcement, which places them as the first Southeast Asia New Retail F&B industries' Unicorn, quoted him to CNBC Indonesia. Besides beverages, it will also expand its business to Cerita Roti, Chigo, and Kenangan Manis Cookies. Currently, Kopi Kenangan has had 500 stores in 45 cities in Indonesia for the past four years. Kopi Kenangan has sold 40 billion worth of coffee, and targeted in the first quarter of 2022 will sell 5.5 million cups monthly.
The launch of Kopi Kenangan was initially to bridge the gap between local street vendors and higher-end cafes. Their strategy to build stores in unconventional places with high mobility and delivery-friendly, surges its revenue at US$22.2 million, 13 times higher than in 2018. However, the pandemic had a snowball effect that dimmed Kopi Kenangan. In the last week of March 2020, revenue dropped by 25% and dropped further to 40% in the next month of April 2020. Nevertheless, the declining sales have no significant impact on this company if compared to other coffee chains. In addition, Kopi Kenangan has created a room for these prominent investors, such as JAY-Z, Serena Williams, Caris LeVert (Sweetgreen’s co-founder), and CEO Jonathan Neman, to back up the excellent coffee chain. On the other side of the world, back in 2018, an F&B Company, Luckin Coffee in China has also become one of the first coffee Unicorns with a reported $200 million to $300 million Series A funding round. Luckin Coffee is the second-largest coffee chain in China, which is valued at over $1 billion. In 2020, Luckin has announced plans to expand new stores, from 660 to 6000 outlets. However, they were encouraged by a considerable investment inflow and no visible pressure to profit.
The development of the digital economy has made startups able to obtain funding, even though the COVID-19 pandemic is hitting the world. Many startups from Indonesia have also succeeded in securing funding from investors and made several of them "ranked up" with Unicorn status. As of 2021, nine startups in Indonesia including Kopi Kenangan, hold this title. Seeing this phenomenon, Indonesia Fintech Society (IFSoc)'s Steering Committee, Rudiantara, said the emergence of Unicorns will still appear in the years to come, whether from the healthtech, fintech, edutech, and any other sectors. As the first company in the F&B sector to obtain Unicorn status in Southeast Asia, Kopi Kenangan brings excitement to the whole F&B industry and thus would be a gate opener for other startups to emerge and attain the following Unicorn status.
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