Digital hubs to support Indonesia's thriving digital economy: business players.


Companies are opening up so-called digital hubs to foster innovation and develop new business activities despite limited government support and skill-set gaps.

Property developer Sinarmas Land CEO of technology business Irvan Yasni said the company had invested Rp 7 trillion (US$496.78 million) for the next 10 years to develop a digital hub- a 26-hectare area in BSD City filled with digital infrastructure - as part of the company's strategic plan in the country's burgeoning digital economy.

"We provide start-ups with working space and [development] assistance to foster collaboration and build a digital community," he said during a discussion on the digital hub held by Sinarmas Land in cooperation with The Jakarta Post in Banten on Dec. 3.

The digital hub concept derives from Silicon Valley, home to United States technology behemoths from Apple to Facebook and Tesla.

"We will also build an integrated transportation system in BSD to support the ecosystem," Irvan said, adding that the transportation system would connect the entire city from clusters to homes to support the digital hub.

The company also plans to work together with several local universities such as Prasetiya Mulya and Atma Jaya, to build a knowledge hub next year in a bid to stoke collaboration among the digital community.

Sinarmas Land currently has two digital hubs: one in BSD City, Banten, which is home to the Apple Developer Academy and Plug and Play's BSD Innovation Labs, and one in Batam that includes companies from Singapore, said Irvan.

"We expect the digital hub to be a home for the digital community and the creative industry," he said, adding that the digital hub would only allow start-ups and digital companies to operate in the area as they operated based on digital technology.

Indonesia's digital economy is well on track to dominate Southeast Asia with its market value expected to triple to $130 billion by 2025 from $40 billion in 2019, according to a study conducted by American tech giant Google, Singaporean holding company Temasek and management consulting firm Bain and Company.

US tech giants from Amazon to Google and Microsoft have set their sights on investing in cloud regions or data centers, as has publicly listed state telecommunications giant PT...

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