• GrabTaxi receives $350M addt’l funding

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    GrabTaxi Holdings Pte Ltd. said Thursday it has received its largest-ever funding injection, a total of more than $350 million (P16.1 billion), from its existing shareholders and investors in China and the United States.

    GrabTaxi identified its major new investors as Coatue Management, L.L.C., a US investment firm that invests in technology worldwide; China’s sovereign wealth fund, China Investment Corp. (CIC); and Didi Kuaidi, a China-based rival to the popular Uber ride-sharing service.

    Anthony Tan, Group Chief Executive Officer and Co-Founder of GrabTaxi said, “This investment is not only a statement on GrabTaxi’s dominance in the region, but also the growth potential of Southeast Asia on a global level.”

    He added, “GrabTaxi is at the forefront of the startup industry in Southeast Asia and it is a mantle we carry proudly. As one of the leaders in the region we’ve been able to attract top global talent to our brand as well as secure investment from great partners like Coatue and CIC.”

    On Didi Kuaidi’s investment, Tan said, “Didi Kuaidi is the leading player in China with strong multi-product experience. We look forward to working with our peer in China, leveraging off each other’s experience to continually deliver the best service possible.”

    Jean Liu, President of Didi Kuaidi said “A cooperative approach with the dominant player in Southeast Asia will enhance both our businesses. Anthony and the team have achieved incredible growth so far, and we look forward to helping continue that momentum.”

    The latest investments bring GrabTaxi’s total funding to approximately $700 million, making it one of the best-funded startups in Southeast Asia. GrabTaxi was first introduced to the Philippines with a launch in Manila in July 2013, and quickly expanded into Cebu, Davao, Iloilo, Bacolod and Baguio.

    GrabTaxi has successfully diversified its offering beyond taxis to include private cars and motorbikes. The new funds will be used to expand these new offerings, with an eye to replicating the success of GrabTaxi’s taxi product line, the company said.

    GrabCar is a private hire vehicle service available in all countries where GrabTaxi is available. GrabExpress is an on-demand, same-day delivery service that is currently available in Manila. Both GrabCar and GrabExpress are available through the same GrabTaxi mobile app.

    “We exist to solve the region’s transportation challenges. Diversifying into private cars and motorbikes has allowed us to touch people of varying income levels and commuting needs.

    We are the only app in the region that has such an extensive network and range of transportation choices,” Tan said.

    The fresh funds will be also used to further develop GrabTaxi’s technology offering through expanding its engineering offices that now cover Singapore, Malaysia, Vietnam and Beijing.

    Launched in 2012, GrabTaxi has continued its aggressive growth throughout Southeast Asia, and currently has more than 110,000 affiliated drivers in 26 cities across 6 countries, including Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, The Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam.

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