SINGAPORE 29th September 2022 – Fazz today announced the appointment of two senior executives, Angus Kong as Chief Technology Officer (CTO), and Seong Per Lee as the Head of Data and AI. This comes in line with the company’s plans to drive its innovation efforts and operational efficiencies to accelerate financial access to businesses in Southeast Asia, a region where 70% of the adult population still remain underbanked despite rapid digitalisation during the pandemic.
The appointments were announced in light of the recent rebranding of the company into Fazz, which includes Fazz Agen, an agent-based financial application serving micro and small businesses in Indonesia, that provides easy access to payment, wholesale purchase, and equitable capital; and Fazz Business, a business account that helps companies of all sizes in Southeast Asia to build, run, and grow their businesses across the region. Fazz was originally known as Fazz Financial Group, a merger between Indonesian-founded PayFazz and Singapore-founded Xfers in March 2021. As part of their growth roadmap, Fazz would be enhancing their Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning Operations (MLOps) capabilities to provide their users with services powered by state of the art technology.The appointments of these senior executives, who bring with them global and regional experience, will help to accelerate that process.
In this new position, Angus will oversee the company’s data and AI strategy and manage the development of the Group’s technology teams. With over 11 years of experience leading AI, Machine Learning, and data science projects from top technology companies including Appier and Google, Angus’ immediate objective will be to lead the transformation of Fazz’s products into a digital finance ecosystem that provides financial access to businesses of all sizes in Southeast Asia. He takes over from Fazz’s previous CTO Victor Liew, who will continue to drive security and other innovation initiatives.
Prior to Fazz, Angus was part of the Google AI team where he led the tech team for natural language model, and launched Universal Sentence Encoder on Google’s AI Hub. Later in Tokopedia, he grew the team from 20 to 40 data scientists and pushed into production several successful data science applications including product image recognition, product review understanding, product recommendation, etc.
As Head of Data and AI, Seong Per will optimise the Group’s AI and Data models to increase efficiencies in assessing credit, automate loan and statement processing, and to strengthen fraud detection capabilities. Passionate about bringing the application of data science to various domains, Seong Per dedicates his time to building platforms that enable the production of machine learning models at scale – allowing people to use data science solutions to solve real-world problems. Formerly a Data Science Senior Lead at Tokopedia, Seong Per joined the tech and startup scene after an illustrious career in Singapore’s public sector, where he contributed in developing national policies and university programs on innovation and entrepreneurship.
“Many businesses in Indonesia and around the region struggle to grow due to limited cash flow, as traditional banks are unwilling to lend to them due to a lack of credit data. Since he joined us, Seong Per has helped to enhance our credit scoring engine, and through the AI and Data Science processes that he has developed, we have already disbursed more than USD 500m in loans to these businesses. This is our commitment to improve credit access and help build a stronger trust relationship between these lenders and underserved businesses,” said Hendra Kwik, Chief Executive Officer of Fazz.
In Southeast Asia, 67% of industry experts believe that access to financial services will remain limited by 2025. However, with digital consumers in Southeast Asia expected to grow to 402 million across the region by 2027 with Indonesia taking the lead, Fazz is strategically positioned to help businesses of all sizes in enhancing their digital offerings which would allow them to tap on that growth.
Hendra further commented, “We are confident that these two senior technologists at Fazz will help us to build one of the best tech driven organisations in the region, tapping on best practices from world leading tech organisations from Silicon Valley. Specifically, as a former Google executive, Angus will lead the development of an all-in-one finance operating system for our users, that is easy to use, and accessible for every Southeast Asian business from warungs, startups, crypto and digital assets to Fortune 500 companies. Leveraging the latest developments in AI and Machine Learning, this will help businesses in the region which are facing traditional lenders and institutions, and low tech support to tap on opportunities and grow to their fullest potential.”
To date, Fazz has served more than 12 million end-users and has more than 300,000 registered agents in Indonesia and Singapore. The company also holds the largest number of licences in the region for e-money, payment acceptance, transfer, lending, banking, and card services. To date, Fazz’s customers are spread across Singapore and Indonesia, which includes e-commerce giants, Blibli.com and Bukalapak; digital business banking enterprise, Aspire; software company, PT Lingkar Niaga Solusindo (Sirclo); and B2B logistic and supply chain company Kargo Technologies.