“Our business recovery continues steadily, with Q3 group revenues climbing to over 95% of pre-COVID-19 levels,” Ming Maa, president of Grab, said in a recent newsletter emailed to subscribers.
Grab counts Softbank among its biggest investors and has evolved from a ride-hail startup in 2012 to a multi-faceted tech company that was last valued at $14 billion. The company serves Asia-Pacific (APAC), Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), and Southeast Asia, and was co-founded by Tan Hooi Ling and Anthony Tan, who serves as chief executive officer.
Like most businesses around the globe, Grab was not immune to the economic fallout triggered by the worldwide pandemic. In June, Singapore’s biggest startup had to lay off 5% of its workforce, about 360 people.
But as the region recovers, businesses like Grab are starting to recuperate. Maa said the uptick in people’s appetite for food delivery has been brisk and now accounts for 50% of Grab’s revenue. The company has also moved into grocery delivery, insurance and financial services.
“Having laid this foundation, we will focus on expanding our financial services and merchant services business through the rest of the year and beyond,” he said.
Like many multi-billion dollar tech startups, Grab is not yet turning a profit. Its most recent funding was a $200 million investment from STIC Investments, a private equity firm in South Korea, Maa said.
In September, Grab said it was looking to raise about $500 million to advance its financial services division. The startup is planning to offer loans and other wealth management tools. Possible investors include Hong Kong’s life insurance group AIA Group Limited and insurance giant Prudential.
The company’s “Thrive with Grab” strategy has its eye on the 70% of the region that is unbanked.