Singapore-Based Ride-Hailing Giant Grab in Talks to Raise Up to $500 Million

September 10, 2020 2:21 am

Beijing (PingWest)—Grab, the $14 billion global ride-hailing company based in Singapore, is in “advanced investment talks” with major insurance firms Prudential and AIA Group, Reuters reported, citing people familiar with the matter.

The company is seeking to raise up to $500 million to boost the financial services sector, which was valued at approximately $2 billion before this round of financing, and the deal is expected to be concluded as early as October.

“Finalizing new funding during these times could also help Grab in its sales pitch for the Singapore banking license,” a source told Reuters.

Last month, Grab expanded its reach with the announcement that it will offer consumer loans in Singapore along with wealth management products.

If a deal between Grab, AIA and Prudential is signed, it would fuel Grab's financial services, enabling the company to provide credit payment, insurance business, wealth management and other businesses in Southeast Asia. Prudential and AIA, both Asia-focused insurers, will likely use Grab’s technology and data to market their own products.

Similar to Uber, COVID-19 also brought a blow to Grab and its major competitor, Indonesia-based Gojek. Although the two companies have launched on-demand delivery services, the sharp drop in travel demand has forced them to cut expenses. 

In June, Grab was reportedly laying off about 360 people, or around 5% of its employees, while Gojek laid off 430 employees, accounting for 9% of its workforce.