ZULU, A Bluetooth Helmet Maker Startup Has Received Funding from Gojek
ZULU’s wearable startup confirmed that they have received funding support from Gojek. Unfortunately, the company that provides a variety of innovations based on applied technology does not mention how much money has been received from the Indonesian ride-hailing giant.
ZULU’s co-founder and Chief Technology Officer Yusuf Syaid told Deal Street Asia said they had pocketed funding from Gojek since August 2018. They received funding after business pitching in January 2018.
“From there we became part of the Gojek rebranding campaign. Starting from managing production, quality control, to jacket distribution (for driver-partners).” said Yusuf Said.
ZULU wearable innovations specifically for two-wheelers are indeed relevant to Gojek’s business base. Since being present in 2018, ZULU has had a product in the form of a helmet equipped with a microphone and bluetooth speaker.
Syaid also said that his company had helped meet the needs of Gojek’s internal digitization, such as making RFID-based barcodes for jacket and helmet driver-partners that had produced around 2 million items.
“And many are still in the process of working on other attributes going forward, such as bags for GoFood,” he added. That way, investments made by Gojek can support the innovations made by Zulu.
Gojek reportedly has disbursed investment to a technology and clothing company called Zulu, although the amount of funds invested was not stated.
This Partnership Can be a Good Symbiosis Between the Two
This startup was founded in 2018 by Nathan Roestandy and Yusuf Syaid. Zulu sells its products through the Lazada e-commerce platform, and Zulu also supplies helmets for Gojek riders.
The Zulu product range includes Bluetooth motorcycle helmets that give users hands-free access to voice calls and GPS navigation, as well as air pollution filter masks that are claimed to be able to filter up to 99% of harmful particles. Zulu also sells riding gloves and goggles for urban bikers.
Zulu sells products through e-commerce platforms and also supplies helmets for Gojek riders. If the news is true, Gojek can help Zulu and its research and development team create new products and innovations related to Gojek’s two-wheeled driver-partners.
Strategically, this investment will help Zulu’s R&D process to develop its innovations. On the other hand, with Gojek’s two-wheeled driver-partners being the backbone of the company’s operations, Zulu’s innovation can help them to move better.
“Zulu innovation will support Gojek’s driver partners through the provision of safe and sophisticated clothing for them in the future.”
This is Gojek’s First Investment After Receiving Series F Funding
At present, still from the same report mentioned, Gojek is the sole investor of ZULU. But Zulu startup is also reportedly preparing to raise Series A funding. The funding will be used for product development and additional team members.
Gojek’s investment into ZULU is the first for the decacorn company to be a B2C business model. They have also taken 11 corporate actions by acquiring several platforms. Finally, Gojek is said to have acquired Moka’s point-of-sale provider startup with a value of US $ 100 million (equivalent to Rp1.4 trillion).
In January this year, Gojek had also closed the F series fundraising which was reported to reach Rp. 27 Trillion with funding from previous investors namely Google, JD.com, and Tencents Holdings. Meanwhile, new investors who joined are Mitsubishi Corporation and Provident Capital.
The investment in Zulu startups is also a step by Gojek to be one step ahead of its new rival, Anterin, which has been acquired by MNC group.
Competition in ride-hailing services in 2020 is getting tougher because of the increasing number of players in this sector. With Gojek’s position as a ride-hailing giant in Indonesia and Zulu’s wearable-tech support, Gojek is certain to attract more users.