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Jakarta Post

Competition body probes OVO over alleged digital payment monopoly

  • News Desk

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Wed, August 28, 2019   /   08:16 am
Competition body probes OVO over alleged digital payment monopoly Staffers promote the OVO digital payment app on Oct. 8, 2018 at the Lippo Kuningan building in South Jakarta. (Antara/Arindra Meodia)

The Business Competition Supervisory Commission (KPPU) is investigating e-payment service OVO over a possible breach of anti-monopoly rules in relation to parking facilities at a number of shopping malls and hospitals.

KPPU investigator Devi Matondang said in Jakarta on Monday that the commission suspected OVO of monopolizing parking fee payment systems at public facilities belonging to the Lippo Group, such as Siloam Hospitals.

"There have been public complaints over parking payments at Lippo’s public facilities, such as Lippo Malls and Siloam Hospitals, where visitors [are permitted] to use only the OVO app to pay parking fees,” said Devi.

She said that Lippo Malls had allowed visitors to pay parking fees using cash or the Flazz e-payment card issued by Bank Central Asia (BCA) prior to OVO's establishment in 2017.

"After OVO was established in 2017, Flazz was no longer [accepted] as a payment alternative," said Devi, adding that visitors to Lippo Malls had since complained of the difficulty they encountered in paying their parking fees.

Siloam Hospitals and Lippo Malls – both part of the Lippo Group conglomerate – especially the malls in Kemang, South Jakarta, and in Puri Indah, West Jakarta, reportedly accept parking fee payments only through the OVO payment app at vehicle exit gates, while non-OVO payments could be done at certain cashier points inside the buildings.

OVO is a digital payment product of PT Visionet International, the Lippo Group's digital financial services subsidiary.

Any attempts to hinder multiple payment methods or to accept only a single payment method violated Law No. 5/1999 on monopoly and business competition, added KPPU commissioner Guntur Syahputra Saragih.

The KPPU has summoned relevant parties in continuing with its investigation into the alleged anti-competition practice, including Sky Parking Utama, which manages parking facilities at Lippo Malls, and is also affiliated with the Lippo Group.

OVO's spokeswoman Sinta Setyaningsih denied the allegation by saying "OVO, Lippo, and Sky Parking did not have any exclusive agreement."

Sinta said the company has yet to be summoned by KPPU regarding the ongoing investigation, adding that OVO is planning to visit the business watchdog to clarify the case.

"There should be no monopoly because cash payment option is also available at certain locations in malls and hospitals," she added.

Contacted separately, Lippo Malls spokeswoman Nidia Niekmasari Ichsan said that the malls had facilitated customers with cash payment option in certain locations inside the malls, adding that customers could also now pay with card payments namely Flazz by BCA and e-Money by Bank Mandiri at vehicles exit gate. (awa)