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After pulling out of China and Russia in the last two years due to local competition, ridesharing service Uber is now exiting Southeast Asia and selling operations to regional rival Grab.
Singapore-based Grab is backed by Japanese telecoms giant SoftBank and operates across eight countries including Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia, and Vietnam. The regional ridesharing service is buying all of Uber’s operations including food delivery service UberEats. In return, San-Francisco-based Uber gets a 27.5 per cent stake in Grab while five hundred of its employees are relocated with the regional service. CEO Dara Khosrowshahi will also be assigned a seat on Grab’s board. The Uber app will work for two more weeks giving drivers an opportunity to transition to Grab.
Grab CEO Anthony Tan said in a statement:
“Today’s acquisition marks the beginning of a new era. The combined business is the leader in platform and cost efficiency in the region.” Meanwhile, Khosrowshahi said in a statement the deal would “help us double down on our plans for growth as we invest heavily in our products and technology.”