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Grab launches investment arm to back Tech Start-Ups in Southeast Asia

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Published on : Jun 05, 2018

Early-stage technology startups in several sectors in Asia are witnessing massive support, particularly financial and technical expertise, from partners in private as well as government sectors. In Southeast Asia, these measures follow some notable acquisitions made by a prominent Singapore-based ride hailing firm Grab which has recently acquired Uber Technologies operations in Southeast Asia.  The company that started as a taxi-booking app six years ago in June 2018 launched Grab Ventures which will be instrumental in a wide range of areas such as food services, financial services, and logistics, apart from transport. In its vision of becoming a pioneer in online-to-offline mobile platform, Grab Ventures is showing increased propensity to partner with numerous start-ups or invest in a few of them.

Investment Arm Launched to Provide Technical Expertise and endow Scalability to Promising Startups

The innovation arm launched includes Drive.ai, technology firm developing self-driving solutions, and Kudo, an Indonesia-based online payment startup. In the coming two years, the company plans to partner with around 8 startups. The firm has also collaborated with government agencies in the development of their technology or to provide scalability in it. It also intends to offer accelerator program for start-ups who are typically in growth-stage, with the aim to build up next-generation of startups in emerging markets world over. Among its government partners are International Enterprise Singapore and Info-communications Media Development Authority of Singapore (IMDA).

Ecosystem of Companies to leverage Vast Potential of Ride-Sharing Technologies

Broadly, Grab is trying to develop a robust ecosystem of companies in Southeast Asia that will unleash the potential of internet economy in the region. With ride-sharing witnessing a plethora of untapped opportunities, the firm is not holding back by taking the plunge. This will help support a culture of start-ups in new, exciting areas even inside Grab. This might help the firm become one of the global challengers, opines the Head of the new innovation arm and investment unit Grab Ventures.

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