Southeast Asian ride-hailing firm Grab is aiming to start the new year with a bang and an awful lot of bucks. The corporation, which acquired Uber’s local business earlier this year, is planning to raise as much as$ 5 billion from its ongoing Series H round, up from an original target of$ 3 billion, a source with knowledge of the plan told TechCrunch.
Grab declined to comment for this story.
That Series H round has been open since June. Already, it has assured participation from the likes of Toyota, Microsoft, Booking Holdings and Yamaha Motor, which have pushed it close to the original$ 3 billion target. Prior to creating $150 million from Yamaha, Grab said the round stands at $2.7 billion. While it is true that the company first announced that it was ” on track to elevate over$ 3 billion following completion of 2018 ,” it is not public knowledge that it has determined its visions as high as$ 5 billion.
A big part of that expansion is a planned investment from SoftBank’s Vision Fund which, as TechCrunch reported last week, is aiming to pump up to $1.5 billion into the business. Adding that to the$ 3 billion total appears to leave a further $500 million apportioning for other investors to take up.
Grab is already the most capitalized startup in Southeast Asia’s history, having raised around $6.8 billion from investors, according to data from Crunchbase. The company was last valued at $11 billion — when Toyota invested the initial$ 1 billion in this Series H six months ago — and it is unclear how much that valuation will increase when the round is completed.
The company is also one of the widest-reaching customer internet companies in Southeast Asia, a region of 650 million customers. Grab claims more than 130 million downloads and more than 2.5 billion completed journeys to date, while it has expanded into fintech and it is going beyond a ride-hailing app to offer Southeast Asia a” super app “ in the mold of Meituan in China. On the financial side, Grab is assumed to not yet be profitable. But it has said that it built$ 1 billion in revenue and that it projects designed to the figure will double in 2019.
Buying Uber’s business made it the dominant ridesharing operator in individual regions — a position that read it pay fines in Singapore and the Philippines — but Uber’s exit also read Go-Jek, a competitive in Indonesia, step up and expand its business into new marketplaces. Go-Jek — which is backed by the likes of Tencent, Meituan and Google — entered Vietnam in August, and has recently launched in Thailand and Singapore as it bids to step into Uber’s shadow.
With Go-Jek aiming to raise$ 2 billion of its own, it surely looks like Grab’s extension of its already-enormous Series H round is also intended to increasing its war chest as the rivalry deepens in post-Uber Southeast Asia.