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Sharing Economy

Upstart Indonesian ride-hails bet business on better driver deals

Subscription models replace commissions for many startups in crowded market

Many new players in Indonesia's ride-hailing market, like Anterin shown above, give drivers more control over fares, charging drivers a monthly fee rather than taking commissions. (Photo courtesy of Anterin)

JAKARTA -- On a typically sweltering day last month in Depok, on the outskirts of Jakarta, local journalists gathered at a tired-looking hotel for a news conference organized by Gaspol Jek, one of the latest entrants in Indonesia's crowded ride-hailing market.

Gaspol had officially launched several months before but, as is customary for Indonesian companies, wanted to hold a "grand launching." The event went off without a hitch, though not without one glaring irony: Many journalists arrived on the back of two-wheeled taxis manned by drivers wearing the distinctive green outfits of Gaspol's giant rivals, Gojek and Grab.

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