Paywatch, a Malaysia-based earned wage access (EWA), has partnered with Bank KB Bukopin, to launch the first bank-backed EWA service in Indonesia, aimed at promoting greater financial inclusion and improving the financial well-being of employees.

The successful launch of this service follows the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MOU) between the two companies, establishing the partnership framework and terms for the development, Paywatch said in a statement.

Through Paywatch, employees in Indonesia can withdraw a portion of their earned wages early, solving cash flow issues that low-income workers face due to limited access to formal financial services and high-interest rates charged by informal lenders.

Paywatch said the firm aims to provide liquidity to the workforce, empower Indonesian workers to focus on financial security and create a financially empowered community that can allow them access more financial benefits.

It said its EWA is a backed and regulator-approved EWA solution that provides employees on-demand access to their earned wages without incurring any interest or fees, unlike other credit platforms and EWA services.

It also said its innovative solution is set to positively impact both employees and employers, creating a sustainable and fulfilled workforce that can achieve its full potential.

Richard Kim, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Paywatch, emphasized the significance of the bank-backed EWA service in Indonesia, saying their initial success in Malaysia and South Korea sets a good foundation for expansion into other markets, particularly in Southeast Asia.

“With the backing of a reputable financial institution like KB Bukopin, Paywatch can help businesses in Indonesia fulfil their ESG commitments and support their people,” he said.

Paywatch said its EWA is designed to be a seamless and hassle-free solution for employers. It is noted that signing up for the service requires no changes to existing HR management or payroll systems, and comes at no additional cost.

With KB Bukopin’s reliable infrastructure and regulatory framework, Paywatch said it is able to offer a secure and trustworthy financial solution for employees, increasing credibility and trust in the service.

Tom Lee, Chief Executive Officer of KB Bukopin, expressed pride in being the first bank in Indonesia to collaborate with Paywatch and launch a bank-backed Earned Wage Access service.

“We are thrilled to lead the way in driving financial inclusion and improving overall financial well-being in Indonesia with Paywatch,

“This partnership is a testament to our unwavering commitment to innovation and our customers’ financial success,” he said.

Robby Mondong, Deputy President Director at KB Bukopin, said he believes that Paywatch’s EWA service has the potential to empower the lives and livelihoods of employees across Indonesian businesses.

“This is a significant step towards building a sustainable digital banking and finance ecosystem that KB Bukopin is committed to achieving,” he said.

To date, Paywatch’s EWA solution has already surpassed more than 200,000 employees globally, improving retention rates for businesses that leverage Paywatch up to 75 percent and saving over IDR 6 billion ($401,108) in annual rehiring fees for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and multinational corporations (MNCs).

Paywatch said its commitment to transforming the landscape of a financially inclusive future is set to create a more sustainable and fulfilled workforce, taking care of the financial well-being of employees in Indonesia and beyond.

Paywatch is a EWA solution provider backed by major banks. Working with top banks and employers in each of its markets, Paywatch serves as a bridge to help employees get banked and achieve financial security.

Paywatch currently operates in South Korea and Malaysia, and is expanding its footprint in Southeast Asia.

Bank KB Bukopin is an Indonesian banking company, offering a range of conventional and Sharia banking services, as well as financing solutions to meet diverse financial needs.

Gobi Partners and MAVCAP works with Paywatch to address demand for earned wage access