Indonesia-based Coffee Startup Kopi Kenangan Secures Investments from American Celebrity-backed Venture Capital Firms

Two American celebrity-backed venture capital firms have participated in the extension of Kopi Kenangan’s US$20 million Series A funding round, the Indonesian coffee chain startup recently announced. Arrive, which is backed by American hip-hop artist Jay-Z’s Roc Nation, and Serena Ventures, the venture capital firm founded by American tennis champion Serena Williams in 2014, have made investments in Kopi Kenangan as an extension of the startup’s Series A financing round. The financing round also saw the involvement of other new investors, such as Jonathan Neman, who is chief executive officer and co-founder of Sweetgreen, and NBA basketball player Caris Coleman LeVert, while Sequoia Capital India is the returning investor. Kopi Kenangan’s seed round was led by Alpha JWC Ventures, while its recent Series A funding round was led by Sequoia Capital India.

With the newly acquired funding from the two venture capital firms, Kopi Kenangan – the Indonesian brand name translates to Memorable Coffee in English – intends to further accelerate its expansion plans across the region of Southeast Asia. Furthermore, for the next two years Kopi Kenangan is planning on increasing its number of stores by more than a thousand as it seeks to cement its position. The coffee chain claims that, presently, it is opening up a new outlet per day on average, and that it has since grown from being a small chain of sixteen coffee stores from just one year ago to a national presence with more than two hundred stores located nation-wide today. Kopi Kenangan further added that it is currently serving more than three million beverages monthly to coffee lovers, and that its revenue has skyrocketed more than twenty times from just a year ago.

Even though Indonesia is among the world’s top coffee bean exporters, the coffee on-demand startup Kopi Kenangan is competing in a nation that is traditionally lukewarm towards the beverage – though recent trends have seen an upswing in coffee drinkers in the country as more and more youngsters are drawn to try out the grounded coffee drinks. In order to distinguish itself in a tight coffee market, Kopi Kenangan sources its important ingredients such as organic palm sugar locally, in a bid to keep their drinks as fresh and aromatic as possible. Although the coffee chain startup has its own take on local coffee beverages, such as its unique spin on the much-beloved local iced coffee beverage, it is considering widening its menu offerings to include more regional drinks, such as teh tarik, a hot milk tea beverage that is the local favourite of both Indonesians and Malaysians, and Thai tea.

According to Edward Tirtanata, Kopi Kenangan’s chief executive officer, the coffee startup is thrilled to be collaborating with their new investors such as Arrive and Serena Ventures as it can leverage on their global experience and expertise as it seeks to build a reputable name for itself in the region. Neil Sirni, who is Arrive’s president and co-founder, said that the venture capital firm is quite impressed by Kopi Kenangan’s many noteworthy achievements in such a relatively short period of time, such as its vast expansion across Indonesia and the jump in the number of employees for its workforce. Neil added that Arrive is fortunate to be working with the coffee chain startup as its advisor and investor as it seeks to bring Indonesia’s unique blend of aromatic coffee to a global audience.

As coffee, the aromatic beverage, begins to gain a stronger hold in Indonesia, the coffee on-demand startup Kopi Kenangan will be there to serve its delicious blend of the brewed drink. Along with its new globally experienced investors and partners in Arrive and Serena Ventures, Kopi Kenangan looks forward to serving and delighting more customers with its high-quality beverages across Southeast Asia.

About author

Derek Tan

Derek is the news editor at Absolute Market, a news media focusing on the Southeast Asian tech and startup scene. Contact him at derek [at] for any news pitch.