Beyond the Soul of Independence Day: Empowering Local MSMEs to Recover Faster and Rise Stronger through Digitalisation

September 2, 2022

Over the past two years, the country has faced difficult challenges and historical tests due to the global pandemic. With the world transitioning into living with COVID-19, Indonesia is likewise entering a period of recovery. At the same time, the government is encouraging the country’s various sectors to contribute in solving different domestic challenges. 

Small and medium-sized businesses, or SMEs, which were among the first stakeholders to be affected by the pandemic, now have the unique opportunity to show how they are a core pillar of the nation’s economy. In the face of these obstacles, the government, private sectors, as well as the broader community must collaborate and synergise to achieve an accelerated recovery in all areas, including in the medium, small, and micro-sized enterprise (MSME) industry. This is in line with the theme presented on the 77th Indonesian Independence Day: “Recover Faster, Rise Stronger,” or, in Bahasa Indonesia, “Pulih Lebih Cepat, Bangkit Lebih Kuat.” 

Therefore, through SIRCLO Store, SIRCLO likewise came forward to assist SMEs and helped to contribute toward this year’s theme for Independence Day.

Withstanding the Test of Turbulent Times

MSMEs have undoubtedly played a significant role in fostering the Indonesian economy over the years. Although they are among the sectors most affected by the pandemic, they are also a sector that adapts quickly, seizes opportunities, and is capable of rising from all adversity. However, in order to take full advantage of the opportunities presented, MSMEs must ensure that they are well-prepared to do so.1

Currently, the number of MSMEs in Indonesia continues to grow every year. They contribute around 61% of the national gross domestic product (GDP) and account for 97% of the country’s workforce.2

Minister of Cooperatives and MSMEs, Teten Masduki, said: “2022 will be a revival momentum for MSMEs. In terms of the number of business actors, MSMEs are the biggest pillar of the national economy.” (3) With their relatively smaller size, compared to larger corporations, they are more agile and nimble, making them resilient buffers that recover fast amidst periods of crisis.

Uplifting SMEs with SIRCLO Store

To help brands recover faster and rise stronger, SIRCLO Store has provided an ecosystem of services, such as the capability for brand owners to sell across various platforms, including website, marketplace, and chat commerce, with various derivative features, including SIRCLO Payment, SIRCLO Store Apps, and Cekatan. Furthermore, SIRCLO has also initiated various programmes to help SMEs adopt digital technologies.

In August 2022, 15% SMEs in SIRCLO Group are SIRCLO Store users, demonstrating the commitment of SIRCLO in assisting local brands to achieve post-pandemic recovery. These improvements are also reflected in the regional distribution of local brands carried by the SIRCLO Store, which is continuously expanding, with a coverage area to 34 provinces across the country. This further shows that the SME sector in Indonesia remains a vibrant part of the Indonesian economy. 

Furthermore, from August 2021 to August 2022, the income increment of the various brands selling directly through the SIRCLO Store increased by 98%, further underscoring the expansion and positive impact of the SIRCLO ecosystem.

Riza Nagari: Bringing an Islamic Touch to Modern Fashion

Among the local SMEs that have leveraged SIRCLO Store is Riza Nagari, a Muslim fashion brand established in August 2017.4 The brand name comes from the founder herself, Oktariza Muchfianagari

After living for many years in western countries, she found herself turning back to inspirations from Islam and Indonesia. She decided to incorporate her life experiences into her clothing designs, imparting her love for Islamic history and classic Indonesian culture, which she continues to study and learn about—even today.

Riza Nagari joined SIRCLO Store as it the platform’s services streamlined the company’s interactions with its clients. For example, customers who want to purchase items on nationwide holidays can still be assisted using the SIRCLO Store’s automated chat feature. The buying process is also made quicker and more simple.

Moreover, Oktariza encourages Indonesians to start their own small businesses and contribute to Indonesia’s future. Although there may be foreign goods that are less expensive, local brands must always be ready to compete, even on the global stage.

“We must continue to strive and promote local goods, so that they can continue to soar and gain international recognition,” said Oktariza.

Cajsa: Building a Footwear Brand

Another local SME that utilises SIRCLO Store is Cajsa, a self-crafted footwear brand.5 Founded in 2015 by Adity, a dedicated shoe designer who was graduated from footwear design school Ars Sutoria in Milan, Italy, Cajsa aims to embrace the shoe fashion culture and pay attention to the finest details of each product. 

Cajsa leveraged SIRCLO Store because the company recognised the value of using technology to oversee the business, especially after previously only tapping into the traditional marketplace. For instance, inventory and stock-taking were made much easier after utilizing SIRCLO Store and features like social media integration were added bonuses that augmented other aspects of the business.

Specifically, Cajsa utilises SIRCLO Store features that are targeted for managing product stock and integrating this with the wider marketplace. This is especially useful when a product is in high demand and/or marked as a bestseller, because the product enters the system directly, instead of colliding with other stock.

In conjunction with the 77th Indonesian Independence Day, as well as in remembrance of the series of unforeseen events that have taken us thus far, let’s embrace the spirit to recover faster and rise stronger. Together, may we become better individuals by joining forces, while also contributing to the present and future of Indonesia.

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