Saturday, 21 July, 2018

Uber to sell Southeast Asian business to rival Grab, source says

New hires relax at a lounge area in a Grab office in Singapore Sept 23 2016 New hires relax at a lounge area in a Grab office in Singapore Sept 23 2016
Lindsey Cook | 27 March, 2018, 18:44

Ride-hailing firm Uber Technologies Inc. has chose to sell its Southeast Asian business to rival Grab, its second exit from Asia after selling its China operations in 2016. Bloomberg News reported over the weekend that the two companies had finalized a deal. In July 2017, Uber also pulled its operations out of Russian Federation by merging with top competitor Yandex.Taxi.

As well as the Philippines, Grab - formally known as GrabTaxi - operates in Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, Burma and Cambodia.

Uber has agreed to sell its south-east Asia operations to local rival Grab for an undisclosed sum as it continues to retreat from the region. In return, Uber will obtain a 27.5 percent stake in Grab and Chief Executive Officer Dara Khosrowshahi will join Grab's board.

"With the combined business, Grab will drive towards becoming the #1 online-to-offline (O2O) mobile platform in Southeast Asia and a major player in food delivery", Grab said in a statement. Grab raised about $2.5 billion last July in a deal valuing the company at around $6 billion.

Since befitting Uber's CEO in September, Dara Khosrowshahi has been navigating to assembling the company's commercial prior to an organized inceptive public offering anticipating next year.

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Grab said it plans to expand its food delivery business to Singapore and Malaysia after integrating it with Uber Eats.

Uber's official statement is of course trying to spin it positively, saying they were able to grow the business after investing $700 million in the region.

Uber Technologies will be selling its Southeast Asian business to rival Grab, according to people familiar with the matter.

The company's full-year net loss widened to $4.5 billion in 2017 as it endured multiple scandals and the departure of its co-founder and former CEO Travis Kalanick. "Grab believes the acquisition will add to, among others, vibrant and competitive ride-hailing, delivery and transportation spaces, and it will make a merger notification to the Competition Commission of Singapore", the company wrote. Khosrowshahi signaled during a trip through Asia last month that he's committed to other key markets such as Japan and India.

The industry's first big consolidation in Southeast Asia, home to about 640 million people, puts pressure on Indonesia's Go-Jek, which is backed by Alphabet Inc's Google and China's Tencent Holdings Ltd.

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