By Jesse Bouman
Discover what founders have learned about resilience, growth, creativity, and innovation from their own personal journeys.
Sidedoor is sponsored by Slice; Slice is a creator management solution that helps agencies and brands manage creator relationships. Slice's integrated CRM platform simplifies reporting, payments, and relationships for sponsored brand content. Visit Slice.id to learn more.
SidedoorApr 03, 2023
Irzan Raditya - A Veteran of AI Chatbots
Slice Group CEO and Sidedoor host Jesse Bouman (@jessebouman) is joined by Irzan Raditya, co-founder and CEO of Kata.ai. Kata.ai has been around for more than eight years, longer than most Sidedoor guests. He's experienced his fair share of ups and downs, including laying off 90% of his staff. However, he managed to pivot the company and create a product around conversational chatbots and AI, before AI became the hot industry. -- Kata.ai: https://kata.ai/ Irzan's Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/irzanraditya/ -- This episode is brought to you by Slice. Slice is a creator CRM that helps brands and agencies better manage their influencer relationships. Slice’s integrated platform simplifies reporting, payments, and relationships for sponsored brand content. Visit www.Slice.id and use Promo code “Sidedoor” for 50% off your first three months. — Past Episodes You Might Like:
Nipun Mehra - Co-Founder & CEO Ula, https://open.spotify.com/episode/0aSuZRySxMd94eLvZuKv0L?si=5dab24d13b5c4632 Tiger Fang - Co-Founder & CEO, Kargo https://open.spotify.com/episode/6zZPNn8fNGaIGacMgC6FyL?si=4d2e0723f9de4c7d Jeth Soetoyo - Founder & CEO, Pintu https://open.spotify.com/episode/5C4C36dfqQS2TaAPvePg9G?si=814f363f602840cd
Widijastoro Nugroho - Keeping the Last Mile Cold
Slice Group CEO and Sidedoor host Jesse Bouman (@jessebouman) is joined by Fresh Factory’s co-founder and Chief Commercial Officer, Widi Nugroho. In a past life, they were colleagues at Mindshare, now they’re both tech entrepreneurs. Widi explains what Fresh Factory does and how they reached product market fit so quickly. He shares the story of getting into YCombinator and some lessons he learned during the accelerator. The episode finishes with a discussion about lessons for older professionals and first time entrepreneurs.
Fresh Factory: https://freshfactory.id/
Widi’s Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/widijastoro-nugroho-7b686b/
This episode is brought to you by Slice. Slice is a creator CRM that helps brands and agencies better manage their influencer relationships. Slice’s integrated platform simplifies reporting, payments, and relationships for sponsored brand content.
Visit www.Slice.id and use Promo code “Sidedoor” for 50% off your first three months.
(3:47) - Intro to Widi & Fresh Factory
(12:59) - Understanding Fresh Factory
(34:57) - The YC Experience
(50:10) - Advice for Older Professionals
Past Episodes You Might Like:
Nipun Mehra - Co-Founder & CEO Ula
Gita Sjahir - Co-Founder, R Fitness
Tiger Fang - Co-Founder & CEO, Kargo
Jeth Soetoyo - Founder & CEO, Pintu
Jeth Soetoyo - How Pintu Earns User Trust
Sidedoor host and Slice Group CEO Jesse Bouman (www.twitter.com/jessebouman) chats with Jeth Soetoyo, CEO of Pintu to discuss how Pintu earns users' trust and champions a growing crypto industry in Indonesia.
Sign up for Pintu: https://pintu.co.id/
Check out Presenting Sponsor Slice: https://slice.id/
Listen to the Sidedoor Podcast on Spotify: www.sidedoor.xyz
Watch the episode on YouTube: www.sidedoor.video
Dr. Timothy Astandu - How Populix Powers Good Decisions
Sidedoor host and Slice Group CEO Jesse Bouman (www.twitter.com/jessebouman) chats with Dr. Timothy Astandu, CEO of Populix to discuss how Populix helps companies of all sizes with market research.
Sign up for Populix: https://info.populix.co/
Check out Presenting Sponsor Slice: https://slice.id/
Ronald Ishak - Developing Indonesia’s Technical Talent
Indonesia is in the midst of a technical renaissance. Within the past ten years, Indonesia has gone from a country confused by tech startups, to a booming industry with multiple billion dollar companies. But as the excitement around tech startups has grown, the strain on the country's technical talent has increased. Supply cannot keep up with demand. Giants like Gojek and Tokopedia bought up all the talent with large compensation packages, leaving smaller startups desperate for talent.
Enter Hacktiv8. Ron Ishak is the co-founder and CEO of Hacktiv8, a developer bootcamp in Indonesia. They are focused on closing this gap between Indonesia’s demand for developers and the home grown supply.
I talk to Ron about Hacktiv8 is developing classes that provide enough rigor to adequately prepare students in just three months for a job in tech and how Hacktiv8’s business model is introducing income share agreements to a market that doesn’t have student loans.
Samira Shihab - Bootstrapping a Fashion Marketplace
Samira Shihab is the co-founder and CEO of Tinkerlust, a secondhand fashion marketplace in Indonesia. Shihab spent much of her youth in Pennsylvania and then moved to Silicon Valley to get her MBA. After moving back to Indonesia, she started her first company and learned that taking a western concept and applying it to Indonesia isn’t as easy as cut and paste.
After living in Indonesia a few more years, she got the inspiration to start Tinkerlust. She and her co-founder bootstrapped the company until they started growing to the point they needed outside capital. In my discussion with Samira I learn how she bootstrapped Tinkerlust, balanced growth and marketing between their fast fashion and luxury items, and how the business has transitioned into a venture backed startup.
Cleo Randing: Making Insurance Simple
Roughly 2% of all Indonesians have insurance. While fintech gets a lot of the headlines, insurance has an equally large opportunity in Indonesia. Cleo Randing is the founder and CEO of PasarPolis, an insurance startup using tech to simplify the process of buying insurance in Indonesia.
In this episode we discuss why Cleo decided to pursue an insurance startup, how PasarPolis has grown despite so few people having or understanding insurance, and how he has been able to scale his skillset as the company has scaled beyond just a few employees.
Pamitra Wineka - The Accidental Entrepreneur
Today's guest is TaniHub Group co-founder and president, Pamitra Wineka, otherwise known as Eka. TaniHub is on a mission to help Indonesian farmers get more reliable and higher income from each of their harvests. They do this through three core business units: TaniHub marketplace, TaniFund P2P lending, and TaniSupply logistics.
In a short amount of time, TaniHub has demonstrated that the farming industry can be streamlined and become more fruitful for the hard working farmers of Indonesia.
For Eka, entrepreneurship wasn’t a life goal or ambition. To him, starting a company seemed like the most logical step to solve a problem he discovered working at the World Bank.
Nipun Mehra - Powering Indonesian Retail
Today’s guest is Nipun Mehra, co-founder and CEO of Ula. Ula is on a mission to help offline retail shops with their wholesale purchasing. It’s hard getting reliable products at wholesale prices and there are many different people and companies to buy products from, making operations fragmented for these small, low-tech businesses.
Ula is developing a marketplace to make the purchasing of products significantly easier and more reliable for offline retailers. Nipun and I discuss why Indonesia, how they solve problems for low-tech retailers, and how he approached building out his founding team and raising capital.
Hiro Kiga - From VC to Founder
Hiro Kiga is the co-founder and COO of Wallex, a B2B fintech company. His career started as a developer at a bank and moved into venture capital before getting the itch to build something.
We’ve heard entrepreneur stories here and last week we got a glimpse of VC life last week. But Hiro is the first founder we’ve had who has had experience on both sides of the table. He has early experience with the Indonesian tech ecosystem, as he was one of the investors in Bukalapak’s Series A round at $3.2 million post money valuation. Bukalapak is now a billion dollar ecommerce company in Indonesia.
Hiro and I talk about how his startup, Wallex, which helps businesses transfer money across borders, got started without a license, how they built trust with customers as an early fintech company, and lessons he learned as a founder that he wasn’t aware of as a VC.
Shiyan Koh - Backing Hilariously Early Founders
Venture capital is both over glorified and misunderstood. VCs are an important part of the tech ecosystem. You need capital to build a business and venture capitalists will invest in highly risky, early stage startups when traditional banks will not. Companies like Apple, Google, Facebook, and Twitter, are all examples of companies that accepted venture capital to grow. But many people, including entrepreneurs, don’t really understand how the business of venture capital works.
Today’s guest is Sidedoor’s first venture capitalist. Shiyan Koh is a general partner at Hustle Fund, an early stage venture capital fund that’s located in San Francisco and Singapore. Shiyan gives us a first hand look at how VCs think. We discuss the opportunities in SE Asia, how Hustle Fund operates, and what she looks for in startups.
Felicia Kawilarang - Traits of Early Employees
Many times, early employees don’t get the same name recognition as the founders. But their contributions are no less significant. Today I’m talking to Felicia Kawilarang, VP of Marketing and Communications for Halodoc. Felicia was the telemedicine app’s first senior marketing hire and has seen the company grow from 40 employees to its nearly 600 employees today.
This is a feat in itself, as we’ve discussed before on the podcast, the employee traits from 1-10 differ from employees 50-100, and then again at 500+. To be able to scale your own skills as the company grows is impressive.
Felicia and I discuss her journey to Halodoc, how her role has evolved with the company, and Halodoc’s growth in the midst of a global pandemic.
Ritchie Goenawan - Scaling a Rocketship
In Season 1 of Sidedoor, I interviewed all founders. I love founder stories because they’re just different. But founders are not alone in this journey. If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together. Founders need a strong team. What that team looks like will change over time. So I wanted to start Season 2 by talking to key employees at fast growing startups and understanding what building a startup is like from their perspective and how it differs from a founder and how it’s similar.
Ruangguru is a fast growing startup in Indonesia. While Go-Jek gets a lot of the attention, Ruangguru raised $150 million over a year ago and has more than 4,000 employees. Today’s guest is Ritchie Goenawan, VP of Business Ops, Product, and Content at Ruangguru, an education tech startup in Indonesia. While he didn’t join the company in the early stages, he joined at a really critical time for many startups…the scaling stage.
In my discussion with Ritchie, we cover what his role of "scaler" entails, how people should assess startup opportunities as an employee, and how a company can stay true to their "Day 1" mentality as they grow quickly.
Gita Sjahrir - Improving Health and Equality
The final guest of Season 1 is Gita Sjahrir. She’s the co-founder and CEO of R Fitness, a growing health and wellness startup, focused on helping improve the lives of all Indonesians.
Our conversation transcends the R Fitness story. Gita is a polymath. You can tell that Gita is a deep thinker and connecting many different dots. While building R Fitness is at the core of our discussion, we touch on the philosophy of life, unconscious biases and their role in business, and why mental health is such an important issue to tackle.
Pangeran Siahaan - Quality Media, Beyond Clicks
Today’s guest is Pangeran Siahaan, co-founder and CEO of Asumsi.co. Asumsi is a leading millennial media publication. Founded in 2017, the site has been bootstrapped until recently, when they raised a seed round from East Ventures.
Bootstrapping a media company is a battle, getting any kind of traction is a success. But getting the 10 million monthly views Asumsi has is quite a feat. Pangeran and I discuss what type of content was needed in Indonesia, why brand is so valuable to media companies, and what the future business model of media companies looks like.
Ilya Kravtsov - Reinvention Amidst a Pandemic
Covid-19 has crushed businesses around the world. Especially those in the food, travel, and live events space. Today my guest is Ilya Kravtsov, co-founder and CEO of PouchNATION.
PouchNATION is an event-based, crowd management, wearables company. They offer event-goers bands that track admission, facilitates contactless payments, and other analytics to event organisers. As you might be thinking, this business must have been hit hard by Covid-19. Which it was. But Covid-19 didn’t mean the end for PouchNATION.
Today we talk about PouchNATION’s core business and technology, how they grew the company right up until Covid-19, and then how they quickly adapted to the realities of Covid-19.
Melia Winata - Growing a Social Enterprise
Today's guest is Melia Winata, co-founder and CMO of Du Anyam. Du Anyam is a social enterprise that works with female communities to create wicker products. They were the official merchandise of the 2018 Asian Games and their products have won awards like the Inacraft Awards in 2018.
Du Anyam is a purpose driven brand who has three core pillars: Empower Women, Promote Culture, and Improve Livelihood. In Episode 2 of Sidedoor, Charlotte Kowara’s advice was to “build purposeful products” and Du Anyam is an excellent example of this philosophy.
In this episode we discuss Melia’s journey with Du Anyam, how they work with the women of Flores, and what growth obstacles they face, like any other business.
Nicole Yap - Building a Tech Ecosystem
Today’s guest is Nicole Yap, the Managing Director of Digitaraya, a startup accelerator in Jakarta. Nicole has seen Indonesia’s entrepreneurial landscape change dramatically since she first visited Indonesia in 2013. Now, she’s part of the dedicated core that’s helping build out Indonesia’s tech ecosystem and transform it into the crown jewel of Southeast Asia.
Nicole and I chat about the changes she’s witnessed in Indonesian tech, what Digitaraya does, how it fits into the local ecosystem and how she’s helping transform the way young entrepreneurs think.
Tiger Fang - Lessons From High Growth Startups
From the outside, being a tech founder seems like a sexy job. But the reality is far different. It’s lonely and a constant struggle.
Today my guest is Tiger Fang, co-founder and CEO of Kargo, a digital logistics company in Indonesia. Prior to Kargo, Tiger worked at e-commerce giant Lazada and then became a country launcher for Uber. Lazada is the Amazon of SE Asia and Uber was arguably the fastest growing startup ever. Between these two positions, Tiger has a plethora of experience when it comes to growth, management, and the intangibles that make a startup go.
This episode is a masterclass in startups and storytelling. A must listen for any aspiring entrepreneur.
Find Tiger online:
Irma Surya - Simplifying Legal Advice
TV has romanticized lawyers with shows like Suits, The Practice, and the Good Wife. But the reality is, legal advice is expensive and overwhelming, especially for small to medium sized businesses. In the US, companies like LegalZoom have made getting access to legal documents easier. In Indonesia, the practice of using lawyers the old fashioned way is still prevalent.
Irma Surya is the founder and CEO of Plato, a legal platform in Indonesia. Irma and I discuss the genesis of Plato, how the platform works, and the challenges growing a legal platform in Indonesia.
Reducing Plastic Waste in Indonesia
Plastic waste is a huge problem in Indonesia. It’s the second largest polluter globally at 3.22 metric tons a year. Today on the podcast we have two very ambitious women, both looking to make a dent in Indonesia’s plastic waste.
Lyonda Huwaidi is the co-founder and CEO of Water Hub, a startup focused on reducing plastic waste through filtered water stations.
Ovy Sabrina is the co-founder and COO of Rebricks, a company that turns plastic waste into bricks that can be used in landscape architecture.
While their products are different, both are tackling the plastic problem in their own way. We discuss the evolution of their companies and how they’re approaching reducing plastic waste.
Indra Wiralaksmana - Building a Muslim Social Network
Across the globe, there are 1.7 billion Muslims, second only to Christianity at 2.3 billion. This represents a huge opportunity. Today's guest is Indra Wiralaksmana, co-founder and CEO of Umma. Umma is a Muslim community based platform. It's part social network, part content aggregator, but designed specifically for the needs of people who consider themselves Muslim.
A trained accountant with a background in consulting, Indra and I discuss his journey from Jakarta to the US and back to Jakarta. How he transitioned from accounting to startup country manager and ultimately how he made the leap from private equity to startup founder.
Aparna Saxena - Reinventing Social Enterprise
Social enterprises are often mistaken for non-profits. They are perceived to be "feel good" organizations associated with a good cause. But social enterprises are real businesses. They need direction, revenue, and talent to become sustainable businesses. Like any company, this requires a CEO who can lead. This week's guest is Aparna Saxena, the newly appointed CEO of Toraja Melo. In this episode we discuss the business of Toraja Melo and how Aparna is reinventing the company for the digital age.
William Tunggaldjaja - Competing with Ecommerce Goliaths
We live in a world where anything we want is one click away. Ecommerce has made this possible. No matter which part of the world you're in, there is an ecommerce giant dominating the market. In the US there is Amazon. In SE Asia, there is Lazada and Shopee. But ecommerce is much larger than a few big players. Today's guest, William Tunggaldjaja, is the co-founder of Asmaraku. We discusses how his lean ecommerce company competes against the largest ecommerce platforms and what it's like starting a business with his wife.
Charlotte Kowara - Finding Purpose
Aimlessly wandering might be fun during a post-graduation gap year. But for most everyone else, it leaves us wanting more. What drives us differs from person to person. Some want money, others fame, but Charlotte Kowara was looking for more. Despite having worked for some of the biggest companies in the world, she was looking for her purpose. She discovered her purpose, as the founder and Chief Empowerment Officer of Indonesia's first food accelerator, Accelerice.
In this episode, I talk to Charlotte about her transition from corporate to startup founder, how she found purpose, and what purpose means for companies that go through Accelerice.
Dick Listijono: Seizing Opportunity
For some, the thought of going to their job brings a knot of anxiety to their stomach. Not everyone loves their job. A great deal of the time, despite not enjoying their work, people stay at their current jobs. No matter how much they dislike it. While others fantasize about their dream career, others are out working to make it a reality. Sidedoor's first guest, Dick Listijono, is one of those hardworking people. We discuss how he went from air conditioning salesman, something he didn't love, to startup CEO.