PRU.L - Prudential plc

LSE - LSE Delayed Price. Currency in GBp
1,346.50
+8.00 (+0.60%)
As of 9:15AM GMT. Market open.
Stock chart is not supported by your current browser
Previous Close1,338.50
Open1,344.50
Bid1,347.00 x 0
Ask1,347.50 x 0
Day's Range1,340.53 - 1,352.00
52 Week Range12.37 - 1,795.00
Volume507,581
Avg. Volume7,416,131
Market Cap35.438B
Beta (3Y Monthly)1.05
PE Ratio (TTM)10.90
EPS (TTM)123.50
Earnings DateAug. 14, 2019
Forward Dividend & Yield0.50 (3.66%)
Ex-Dividend Date2019-08-22
1y Target Est2,079.18
  • Prudential CEO Wells on 'Pulse' Health App, Asia Strategy
    Bloomberg

    Prudential CEO Wells on 'Pulse' Health App, Asia Strategy

    Aug.07 -- Prudential PLC Chief Executive Officer Michael Wells discusses the U.K. insurer's new 'Pulse' digital health app it's introducing in Malaysia, and the company's strategy for the Asia. He speaks with Paul Allen and Sophie Kamaruddin on "Bloomberg Daybreak: Asia."

  • Read This Before You Buy Prudential plc (LON:PRU) Because Of Its P/E Ratio
    Simply Wall St.

    Read This Before You Buy Prudential plc (LON:PRU) Because Of Its P/E Ratio

    Today, we'll introduce the concept of the P/E ratio for those who are learning about investing. We'll show how you can...

  • Former Prudential fund management and UK arm valued at £5.7bn
    The Guardian

    Former Prudential fund management and UK arm valued at £5.7bn

    The closing share price gives M&G a market value big enough to be eligible for the FTSE 100. Photograph: Chris J Ratcliffe/Getty ImagesThe fund management and UK arm of Prudential has been valued at £5.7bn on its first day of trading on the London Stock Exchange, following a demerger from the 171-year-old insurance group.M&G formally became a separate listed firm on Monday, focusing on what were Prudential’s UK and Europe operations. Prudential will now focus on the US, Africa and Asia.Shares in M&G closed the day slightly below the 220p opening price at 218p, giving it a market value big enough to be eligible for the FTSE 100 index.The decision to split Prudential, which was founded in 1848, was first announced last year, and came after the group combined its UK life insurance arm with its fund management division in 2017.M&G made its market debut with £341bn in assets under management, and with 6,331 staff worldwide. The company serves about 5.5 million retail customers and 800 institutional clients through 20 global office operating across 28 markets.Sign up to the daily Business Today email or follow Guardian Business on Twitter at @BusinessDeskBoth Prudential and M&G remain headquartered in London.The chief executive of M&G, John Foley, said the split was a significant milestone for his company.He said: “Our independence and unique business mix means we are well-positioned to benefit from long-term economic and social trends that offer growth opportunities for many years to come.”

  • Reuters

    FTSE debutant M&G still in shadow of glitzier Prudential

    Shares in UK and Europe-focused asset manager and insurer M&G fell slightly on its first day of trading after being demerged from Asia-focused Prudential , which soared to the top of Britain's top share index. Faced with tougher European capital and solvency rules after the financial crisis, many insurers have looked to simplify their operations by breaking up, among them Standard Life Aberdeen and Old Mutual . "The Board believes the demerger will help Prudential and M&G to become more closely aligned to the interests of their customers and shareholders," Prudential Chairman Paul Manduca said.

  • Top London Money Manager Accused of Sexual Harassment, Groping
    Bloomberg

    Top London Money Manager Accused of Sexual Harassment, Groping

    (Bloomberg) -- One of London’s top money managers, responsible for overseeing billions of pounds of assets at M&G Prudential Plc, is alleged to have sexually harassed female colleagues over several years.The senior fund manager targeted women in junior positions at the firm’s London headquarters and barraged them with sexually explicit text messages, inappropriate comments and unwanted physical contact, according to people who experienced or witnessed his behavior and asked not to be identified for fear of retaliation.One woman who frequently dealt with the manager said he would often put his hand on her bottom, fondle her thighs or give her unsolicited shoulder massages. When she asked him to stop, she said, he would refuse and complain she was being uptight, or say he had touched her by accident. A second woman said he did similar things to her.The first woman said she complained about the behavior to the firm’s human resources department. It isn’t known what, if any, action the company took, but the manager has remained in his position.“We consider the allegations that you have raised with us to be very serious matters which merit a full investigation,” Alexandra Ranson, a spokeswoman for M&G, said in an email to Bloomberg News. “We want our people to feel safe where they work, and expect all our employees to treat each other with dignity and respect. If it is found that any individuals in the employment of M&G Prudential have breached our very clear policies relating to conduct and behavior, we will take the appropriate disciplinary action.”The firm has hired law firm Baker McKenzie to assist with the investigation, according to people with knowledge of the probe. A Baker McKenzie spokeswoman declined to comment.M&G, which manages about 340 billion pounds ($430 billion) of assets on behalf of both retail and institutional investors, is owned by British insurer Prudential Plc. Prudential is planning to spin off its U.K. and European investment and savings business as M&G Plc later this month.Drinking CultureHarassment is still part of daily life for many women working in finance in London, where the high cost of pursuing court cases and some of the toughest libel and privacy laws in the world conspire against them.In contrast with the U.S., where media outlets have identified accused sexual harassers, many in the U.K. have remained anonymous. Few people who say they’ve been victims have been willing to make those claims publicly in court. Bloomberg News isn’t naming the manager at this time. His lawyer said he has never been made aware of any complaint about his behavior to HR.A Bloomberg Businessweek investigation in March revealed a culture of sexual misconduct nearby at the 331-year-old Lloyd’s of London insurance market, ranging from inappropriate comments to unwanted touching and sexual assault. In response, Lloyd’s set up a whistle-blower hotline, introduced lifetime bans for inappropriate behavior and barred those under the influence of alcohol or drugs from the exchange.Like Lloyd’s, M&G has a deeply embedded drinking culture, where some employees, including managers, knock back pints in the pubs and clubs around the office at lunchtime before returning to the office or after work. Some would round off an evening with a trip to a strip club. Rape jokes and other coarse sexual language were the norm in the office and at the pub, the people said. Some men would openly look at pornographic pictures on their mobile phones while at their desks, one person said.The senior manager who allegedly harassed junior colleagues made no secret of what he was doing. At a staff party a few years ago, he approached a trainee, grabbed her around the waist, held her close and kissed her, according to a person who witnessed the incident. The woman was visibly distressed, but no one did anything to stop him, the person said. The manager did the same thing to another woman later that same night, the person said.Inappropriate MessagesThe manager would target women in junior positions where they didn’t have any power, the people said. One woman said he started off by making inappropriate comments about her clothing and physical appearance, then asked for her phone number in case he needed to contact her outside of work and connected with her on social media.The woman said she initially felt flattered that a senior manager seemed to care about her and wanted to hear her opinions. Things spiraled quickly, though, and he began sending increasingly inappropriate messages and photographs to her phone and email accounts. He would sometimes send sexually graphic messages late at night while she was sleeping, so it would be the first thing she saw in the morning. She said she asked him to stop and had never given him any reason to suspect she was interested in him sexually.The manager was able to get away with his abusive behavior for so long because of his seniority, the people said. Many of those who said they were victimized by him or who witnessed his behavior said they were too scared to complain to HR or their managers because they thought it would negatively affect their careers. Some were recent graduates with no experience of corporate life and not in a position to challenge someone operating with seeming impunity.Those who did complain saw nothing come of it. One woman who lodged a formal protest said she was advised to smile less around the manager and dress more conservatively. The HR manager she complained to, a woman, told her she wasn’t the first person to say she had been sexually harassed by the fund manager.One person said that when she asked her manager for advice about how to handle the situation she was told she needed to toughen up, as that was what the industry was like. The manager said there was very little that could be done about it, and that she should count herself lucky as the behavior of men in London’s financial district used to be far worse.Sexual AdvancesThe senior fund manager wasn’t the only alleged offender at M&G. One man pointed a phone camera up the dress of a female colleague without her knowledge at an after-hours gathering and then shared the photo with others, according to a person with direct knowledge of the incident.One of the women said men would routinely assess the attractiveness of female employees. Several said they would like to have sex with her. “You would definitely get done,” she recalled one saying. “I would destroy you.”The woman said she didn’t complain to HR because she thought it could hurt her chances of promotion, risk turning her colleagues against her and wouldn’t result in any disciplinary action. She said her experiences were in no way unique and that women had to develop a thick skin if they wanted to survive at the firm.One woman who worked in various parts of the business said she experienced sexual harassment in one form or another on all the desks where she worked. She also didn’t complain to HR because was worried about the impact on her career.Pornographic PicturesM&G fired a junior fund manager in 2017 for posting sexually explicit pictures online of a 22-year-old trainee after she had spurned his advances. Davide Buccheri, the fund manager, created a gallery of pictures using photos from the woman’s social media accounts alongside edited pornographic images he found on the internet. He then told managers at M&G about the photos. Buccheri was reported to the police and subsequently found guilty of harassment and sentenced to 16 weeks in prison. He declined to comment.The firm said at the time that it “does not tolerate harassment of any kind, and we have very clear processes for identifying, investigating and resolving any issues which arise.”Ranson, the M&G spokeswoman, said in her email that the company encourages current and former employees to report any behavior they have experienced or witnessed at work through a confidential hotline. “His or her concern will be taken seriously, thoroughly investigated and appropriate action will be taken,” she said.There are parallels in the way M&G failed to deal with allegations of inappropriate behavior and how insurance companies in the Lloyd’s of London market turned a blind eye to sexual misconduct. The women Bloomberg interviewed as part of the Lloyd’s investigation said their employers willfully ignored the near-constant harassment they suffered. The few who complained to HR were usually talked out of pursuing their grievances after being told it would hurt their career prospects to do so.Two of the women who worked at M&G said they found it easier to leave than take on their harassers. One, who said she had been harassed by the fund manager for years, said that after she gave notice the abuse stopped, and he turned his attention to the newest hire on the desk.To contact the reporter on this story: Gavin Finch in London at gfinch@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Alan Katz at akatz5@bloomberg.net, Robert FriedmanFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.

  • Trade Alert: The Group Chief Risk & Compliance Officer and Executive Director Of Prudential plc (LON:PRU), Stuart Turner, Has Just Spent UK£347k Buying Shares
    Simply Wall St.

    Trade Alert: The Group Chief Risk & Compliance Officer and Executive Director Of Prudential plc (LON:PRU), Stuart Turner, Has Just Spent UK£347k Buying Shares

    Investors who take an interest in Prudential plc (LON:PRU) should definitely note that the Group Chief Risk...

  • Want To Invest In Prudential plc (LON:PRU)? Here's How It Performed Lately
    Simply Wall St.

    Want To Invest In Prudential plc (LON:PRU)? Here's How It Performed Lately

    Increase in profitability and industry-beating performance can be essential considerations in a stock for some...

  • Investing.com

    Top 5 Things to Know in the Market on Tuesday

    Investing.com -- China throws a party with ICBMs and stealth drones, while Hong Kong burns. Meanwhile, Europe's economy looks ever grimmer and Credit Suisse (SIX:CSGN) clears its CEO of wrongdoing in a spy drama. Here's what you need to know in financial markets on Tuesday, 1st October.

  • Prudential fined £24m for annuities sales failings
    The Guardian

    Prudential fined £24m for annuities sales failings

    Insurer to compensate 35,000 customers after failing to advise them to shop around. Prudential has been fined nearly £24m for “serious breaches” after failing to advise customers they might get a better deal if they shopped around for annuities and incentivising staff with spa breaks and weekends away. The Financial Conduct Authority, the City watchdog, said the failures caused harm to customers affected by the breaches between July 2008 and September 2017. Prudential apologised to customers and said it hoped to pay compensation by the end of October to most of the 35,000 people it estimates are affected. So far, the company has paid out £110m to 17,240 customers. As well as failing to ensure customers were consistently informed they might get a better deal if they shopped around, the FCA said Prudential had also failed to properly monitor customer calls and handed out incentives to staff that meant they might “put their own financial interests ahead of ensuring fair customer outcomes”. Call handlers were given sales-linked incentives, offering them the possibility of earning an additional 37% on top of their base salary and winning prizes such as spa breaks or weekend holidays. The watchdog said the £23.88m penalty would have been £34.1m if Prudential had not accepted the findings. Mark Steward, the FCA executive director of enforcement and market oversight, said: “Prudential failed to treat some of its customers, who could have secured a better deal on the open market, fairly. “These are very serious breaches that caused harm to those customers. Prudential is now rightly focused on redress and today’s financial penalty reinforces the cardinal obligation of fairness that firms owe to customers.” Prudential said: “We are deeply sorry for the historic failings in our non-advised annuity business and any detriment this has caused our customers. We are working hard to put this right and are on schedule to offer redress to the vast majority of affected customers by the end of October this year. “Our systems and controls have been significantly strengthened in the past two years through a substantial investment in our business.” An annuity is a retirement income product that can be bought with a customer’s pension pot and pays them a regular income in return. Prudential stopped selling annuities directly to customers in February 2017.

  • Markets watchdog fines Prudential 24 million pounds over annuity sales
    Reuters

    Markets watchdog fines Prudential 24 million pounds over annuity sales

    Britain's markets watchdog has fined insurer Prudential 24 million pounds ($29.39 million) for failures related to non-advised sales of annuities, it said on Monday. The FCA said Prudential failed to make sure customers were consistently advised that by shopping around they could get a higher rate on their annuities, which pay pensioners a fixed income for life. The fine relates to the period between July 2008 and September 2017, the FCA said, adding that as of Sept. 19, 2019, Prudential has offered around 110 million pounds in redress to 17,240 customers.

  • AIA Can Withstand Hong Kong Visitor Hit
    Bloomberg

    AIA Can Withstand Hong Kong Visitor Hit

    (Bloomberg Opinion) -- Turbulent times should mean good business for insurers as people try to protect themselves against the hazards of an uncertain world. Hong Kong’s summer of unrest has proved anything but happy for shares of AIA Group Ltd., the city’s biggest seller of policies. The company may prove more resilient than investors are giving it credit for.AIA has slumped more than 16% from its July 19 peak, among the worst performers on Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index in that period. The insurer has the third-highest weighting in the benchmark after HSBC Holdings Plc and Tencent Holdings Ltd., which have both lost less than 9% over the same time frame. AIA’s steepening decline is unusual for a stock that has mostly seen steady gains since it was spun out of American International Group Inc. after the financial crisis in 2010.Blame the Hong Kong protests. Anti-government demonstrations have led to a precipitous fall in mainland Chinese visitors to the semi-autonomous city. These tourists are an important source of business for Hong Kong insurers, whose dollar-based products offer a hedge against the falling yuan and a route outside China’s restrictive capital controls. Chinese tour groups to Hong Kong for the Golden Week holiday starting Oct. 1 are set to plunge 86% from a year earlier, Jinshan Hong and Qian Ye of Bloomberg News reported last week, citing the city’s Travel Industry Council.Policies sold to mainland visitors accounted for 26% of total new premiums received from individuals in the first six months of 2019, according to Hong Kong’s Insurance Authority. While AIA sells insurance across Asia, Hong Kong contributed 40% of its new business value in the first half, Michael Chang of CGS-CIMB Securities Ltd. reckons. Of this, mainland Chinese visitors accounted for 20%, Chang estimates.The physical presence of customers in Hong Kong is important because, unlike most financial assets, the city’s regulators require insurance to be sold face-to-face, at least to new clients. AIA, Prudential Plc and China Taiping Insurance Holdings Co., a state-controlled company based in Shanghai, are among the most reliant on mainland visitors, according to Bloomberg Intelligence analyst Steven Lam.There’s more to AIA’s China exposure than sales made in Hong Kong, though. The company’s new business value in China surged 26% in the first half to account for 29% of AIA’s total. Demand for insurance is surging in the mainland as incomes rise while health and retirement systems remain under-developed.Until recently, AIA had failed to make much headway in a market that’s dominated by state behemoths such as China Life Insurance Co., despite being the only foreign insurer allowed to operate without a partner (thanks to roots that stretch back to 1919, when AIG was founded in Shanghai). That may be starting to change as the government, under pressure from slowing economic growth, opens its financial markets further to overseas companies.This year, the government loosened regulations that restricted AIA to five geographical regions: Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen and the provinces of Jiangsu and Guangdong. The insurer has now moved into new provinces and started selling policies in Tianjin municipality and in the city of Shijiazhuang in Hebei province. (German insurer Allianz SE  has been given the green light to set up the first wholly foreign-owned insurance holding company in the country.)In any event, the collapse in Chinese visitors to Hong Kong is likely to ease even if the protests continue. Investment-linked insurance products denominated in the Hong Kong dollar – which is pegged to the greenback – offer a perennial hard-currency allure for mainland individuals with few opportunities to diversify at home. Insurers in the city also sell policies denominated in the U.S. dollar itself. AIA’s new business value in Hong Kong jumped 19% in the first half.The slide in AIA stock has taken its price to embedded value to 1.9 times, from a peak of 2.4 times at the end of June. That’s still a premium to rivals such as Ping An Insurance (Group) Co., at 1.3 times, and China Life at 0.5 times, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Prudential, weighed down by its exposure to the slower-growing U.K. market, trades at 0.7 times embedded value. Still, 19 of 22 analysts tracked by Bloomberg rate AIA stock a buy, with only one sell recommendation.This slump looks to have limits.        To contact the author of this story: Nisha Gopalan at ngopalan3@bloomberg.netTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Matthew Brooker at mbrooker1@bloomberg.netThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.Nisha Gopalan is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering deals and banking. She previously worked for the Wall Street Journal and Dow Jones as an editor and a reporter.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinion©2019 Bloomberg L.P.

  • Prudential, M&G to split in October into two FTSE 100 firms
    Reuters

    Prudential, M&G to split in October into two FTSE 100 firms

    Prudential will spin off its UK and European insurance and asset management business M&G in October, Britain's largest insurer said in a prospectus published on Wednesday, dividing the insurance giant into two large-cap stocks. Prudential, founded in 1848 to provide loans to professional workers, announced the plan to hive off its UK arm last year. The split follows a trend among insurance and asset management businesses such as Old Mutual and Standard Life Aberdeen to break up and simplify their operations.

  • Imagine Owning Prudential (LON:PRU) And Wondering If The 15% Share Price Slide Is Justified
    Simply Wall St.

    Imagine Owning Prudential (LON:PRU) And Wondering If The 15% Share Price Slide Is Justified

    Passive investing in an index fund is a good way to ensure your own returns roughly match the overall market. But if...

  • Thomson Reuters StreetEvents

    Edited Transcript of PRU.L earnings conference call or presentation 14-Aug-19 10:30am GMT

    Half Year 2019 Prudential PLC Earnings Call

  • There's A Lot To Like About Prudential plc's (LON:PRU) Upcoming 1.2% Dividend
    Simply Wall St.

    There's A Lot To Like About Prudential plc's (LON:PRU) Upcoming 1.2% Dividend

    It looks like Prudential plc (LON:PRU) is about to go ex-dividend in the next 3 days. You will need to purchase shares...

  • UK judge blocks £12 billion transfer of Prudential annuities to Rothesay Life
    Reuters

    UK judge blocks £12 billion transfer of Prudential annuities to Rothesay Life

    A UK High Court judge has blocked the transfer of 12 billion pounds in annuities from insurer Prudential to Rothesay Life, the two companies said on Friday. The deal, which would have been the largest ever such transfer covering 400,000 policy holders, was announced in March last year at the same time Prudential said it was to demerge its UK business. In response to tougher European Union rules introduced after the financial crisis, insurers have increasingly looked to free up capital by offloading closed books of annuity business to specialist firms such as Rothesay and Phoenix Group.

  • Reuters

    Prudential to split by year-end; monitoring Hong Kong protests

    Britain's biggest insurer Prudential will complete a planned break-up of the company by the end of the year, with its UK-focused fund and insurance business set to list as M&G Plc. The Asia and U.S.-focused rump of the company will continue to trade as Prudential and be listed in the UK, but will be subject to the regulator in Hong Kong - where Prudential said it was "carefully monitoring" current violent protests in the city. "We expect to complete the demerger of M&GPrudential in the fourth quarter of 2019, and preparations are complete for Prudential Plc's move to group-wide supervision by the Hong Kong Insurance Authority," Chief Executive Mike Wells said in a statement.

  • How Do Analysts See Prudential plc (LON:PRU) Performing In The Next Couple Of Years?
    Simply Wall St.

    How Do Analysts See Prudential plc (LON:PRU) Performing In The Next Couple Of Years?

    The latest earnings update Prudential plc (LON:PRU) released in March 2019 confirmed that the company benefited from a...

  • Bill Gates and Former Bass Guitarist Aim to Change Health Care
    Bloomberg

    Bill Gates and Former Bass Guitarist Aim to Change Health Care

    (Bloomberg) -- Jonathan Sudharta was a brawl-prone, unremarkable student who played in a rock band. Friends of his father, a self-made tycoon, feared he’d one day take over the family medical business and ruin it.Instead, in 2016, at the age of 34, Sudharta co-founded a startup that attracted the interest of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and today becomes the organization’s first ever equity investment in an online health-care platform.His creation, Halodoc, is trying to address one of the biggest problems in medicine: In a world with too few doctors and hundreds of millions of people without proper access to clinics, how can people get the diagnosis and drugs they need quickly and cheaply?“Someone is going to solve patient-centric, 21st century, primary health care and we think that Halodoc has a huge potential to do that,” said David Rossow, London-based founding partner of the Gates Foundation’s Strategic Investment Fund.Microsoft Corp.’s co-founder has invested heavily to fight specific diseases, including a pledge of $1 billion to end malaria. Yet the challenge for much of the developing world is how to get health care day to day, not just for a single illness. About 40 million people use Halodoc’s app or website to connect with more than 22,000 licensed doctors in Indonesia for an online consultation. Sudharta said in an interview he is aiming to expand that by 2020 to 100 million people -- more than one in three Indonesians. Once they have a diagnosis, patients can buy medicine through the app from one of more than 1,000 pharmacies and get it speedily delivered by motorcycle or scooter.Halodoc, valued at about $350 million according to people familiar with its accounts, also offers home blood and urine tests by a visiting medical attendant, with the result sent via the app. Patients can use the website if needed to book face-to-face appointments with a doctor at a hospital.Few places could get more benefit from a new mobile-based health care system than Indonesia. With a population of 260 million spread across more than 17,000 islands, it has only two physicians for every 10,000 people, behind the 8 in India, and 26 in the U.S., according to the World Bank.Despite efforts by the government, infrastructure and services remain largely overwhelmed, with traffic snarls in major cities like Jakarta and public facilities often operating beyond capacity. People can make a living by queuing for others.A 20-minute drive from Halodoc’s offices, in the Apotik Mahakam pharmacy, customers are either elderly or deliverymen waiting to whisk orders on scooters through the narrow alleys and clogged arteries of the capital. Even with peak-hour traffic crawling at an average 6.2 miles an hour, Halodoc customers can get their pills in a little over half an hour.In the nerve center of the Halodoc operation in central Jakarta one morning this month, some 400 young employees worked in the kind of featureless, chaotic, laptop-filled rooms that are the hallmark of a tech startup. Men in T-shirts and women in headscarves tapped away at keyboards, surrounded by piles of cardboard boxes, medicine delivery bags, flipcharts and stacks of bubble-wrapped chairs that were awaiting a move to larger premises. Below a giant pinboard of staff photos, an unused ping-pong table presented a plateful of snacks.In the next room, half a dozen doctors in white coats sat round a table diagnosing the populace via laptops and mobile phones.The face of a young man with round spectacles and a scar on his right cheek appeared on the phone of Dr. Alia Kusuma, one of the front line GPs. He had fallen from his motorcycle a month ago and was worried about the lasting effect. After a short consultation, Kusuma referred him to a laser treatment specialist.Across the table, Dr. Devi Anneta was following up on the progress of a 51-year-old man who had been hospitalized for high cholesterol, hypertension and joint problems.Halodoc covers the cost of the medical advice from its capital and from commissions on drug sales, lab tests and hospital referrals. A prominent, crossed-out label on the app shows that it will eventually charge upwards of 20,000 rupiah ($1.40) per consultation.Halodoc’s rise reflects the pace of change in Indonesia, the world’s fastest-growing internet economy. Sudharta’s father founded a pharmaceutical materials trading house in 1975 that’s now called Mensa Group and has businesses from making drug ingredients to supplying medical equipment to hospitals. The conglomerate gave the young Sudharta connections to doctors, hospitals and pharmacies, and contacts at the health regulator with whom he could discuss new ideas. While his father’s company didn’t fund Halodoc directly, the startup rents offices in one of Mensa’s buildings.One of Sudharta’s early encounters with medical care was at 13, when he and some school friends got into a fight with kids at a senior school and were beaten mercilessly. The pugilistic boy was sent to the prestigious Hale School in Perth, Australia, before studying commerce at Curtin University, filling the time by playing bass in a band and producing films and concerts for Indonesian diaspora.Back in Indonesia he joined his father’s firm as a trainee, and was sent on his first day to the port with a stack of cash. His job was to hand out a 1,000 rupiah note bonus (about 10 U.S. cents) to each worker carrying a load of shipment.He was upset to see an elderly worker carrying a heavy load, and wanted to give him 5,000 rupiah, but the manager stopped him, saying his action would be detrimental for the company. When the old man wholeheartedly thanked him for the tiny tip, Sudharta realized how privileged he was. He vowed never to take it for granted again.“It was a big slap in my face,” Sudharta, now 37, said in a conference room with a broken red sofa in Halodoc’s offices in Jakarta. “That changed my life.”He went to see Ferry Soetikno, a successful second-generation scion who had expanded his family’s health-care business, PT Dexa Medica. Soetikno, 12 years his senior, told him: focus, start from the beginning and always measure your performance.Sudharta adopted the pseudonym Budi Jonathan to hide his identity and began as a junior medical representative at Mensa, often waiting until past midnight for a chance to pitch drugs to overworked doctors. Over the next 13 years he rose through the company ranks.He didn’t think of starting his own medical business, but would talk to friends about the gaps he saw in Indonesia’s system. One of those friends, Gojek co-founder Nadiem Makarim, pulled him aside one day and said: “‘Why don’t you do it yourself? A startup. Fundraise. Do it properly.’”Gojek, Indonesia’s answer to Uber Technologies Inc., went on to become the country’s most valuable startup, with ride-hailing, food delivery and payments services across the country and now spreading elsewhere in Southeast Asia. It also became a key strategic backer for Halodoc, integrating the app in 2017 into its platform.Makarim’s advice was to focus on helping people where they felt the greatest pain, and Sudharta thought of the countless times he’d seen patients camped out in hospitals to see a doctor for a few minutes and then wait another two hours to get medicine.A year after Halodoc started, Sudharta had another pivotal introduction when he was part of a group of young leaders invited to a lunch with Bill Gates in Seattle. The invitees were asked to dress formally. Sudharta arrived in a business shirt, but removed it just before the meeting with Gates to reveal a red T-shirt emblazoned with Halodoc’s logo.Sudharta left the meeting with the message that if you’re lucky enough to be able to change the world, do good, stay on course and don’t get distracted by the financial rewards.Meanwhile, the Gates’ foundation, which distributes billions of dollars in grants to improve living conditions in developing countries, had been increasingly looking to make direct investments in companies that could help advance its goals. One of its target countries was Indonesia and the investment arm zeroed in on Halodoc.The foundation is joining Halodoc’s so-called extended Series B round of funding with other new contributors Prudential Plc and Allianz SE. They will add to the $65 million Halodoc secured from UOB Venture Management, Singtel Innov8 and Korea Investment Partners in March. Halodoc is only one of dozens of health-tech startups developing apps. Gojek rival Grab has a joint venture with China’s Ping An Good Doctor to provide online services in Southeast Asia, while Indonesian rivals include Alodoktor.What helps Halodoc stand out is the breadth of Sudharta’s vision to cover all aspects of the patient’s experience, all wrapped together with digital payment, said Shane Chesson, founding partner at Singapore-based Openspace Ventures and an early backer of Halodoc.“In rapid time, Haldoc has moved to be one of the best at product development in Indonesia,” he said. For the Gates Foundation, Halodoc is part of its belief that technology can improve access to quality health-care for low-income groups, said the strategic investment fund’s Rossow.“Whether it’s a midwife on a remote island or a pharmacy in a major city or a hospital system, Halodoc’s approach of closing that online-to-offline loop is rare,” he said. “There is huge opportunity for Indonesia to lead the world with some of these innovations.”To contact the authors of this story: Yoolim Lee in Singapore at yoolim@bloomberg.netDavid Ramli in Singapore at dramli1@bloomberg.netTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Adam Majendie at adammajendie@bloomberg.net, Peter ElstromFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.