Ride-hailing firm Grab buys Uber's SE Asia operations

Agence France-Presse

Posted at Mar 26 2018 10:40 AM | Updated as of Dec 23 2018 08:00 PM

Ride-hailing firm Grab buys Uber's SE Asia operations 1
People wait for the start of Grab's fifth anniversary news conference in Singapore June 6, 2017. Edgar Su, Reuters

SINGAPORE (UPDATE) - Ride-hailing firm Grab announced Monday it has bought US rival Uber's business in Southeast Asia, ending a fierce battle for market share in the region.

Singapore-based Grab said in a statement it is buying Uber's ride-sharing and food delivery operations in the region. In exchange, Uber will receive a 27.5 percent stake in Grab, the statement said.

About 500 Uber staffers will transition to Grab over the coming weeks, while customers will have to shift to Grab from Uber apps, Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi said Monday in an email sent to the firm's Southeast Asia staff.

Khosrowshahi said Uber has invested $700 million in the region.

“These are never easy decisions and I know this will mean a big change for you and your families, but I believe that combining forces with Grab is the right thing to do for Uber for the long term,” he said.

Although “consolidation” is not Uber’s global strategy, the Southeast Asia agreement with Grab puts the firm in a position to “compete with real focus and weight in the core markets,” he said.

Uber has existing operations in Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam and Myanmar.

-- With a report from Agence France-Presse