Grab, a ride-hailing company in Southeast Asia, is gearing up to announce it has landed $1 billion in a new investment, which will be used to expand its payments unit.
Reuters, citing a source familiar with the matter, reported that the funding is coming from a group of U.S. investors and strategic backers. Reuters, however, didn’t name the investors or backers, and the announcement comes after Grab purchased Uber’s Southeast Asian operations. In June, Toyota Motor agreed to pay $1 billion for a stake in Grab, acting as the lead investor in a round of funding.
Grab is reaching even farther into the region. It said earlier this year that it would launch Grab Ventures, where it would invest in sectors as far-flung as transport and food services, Reuters reported. It was also announced that Grab will look to partner with 8 to 10 startups through the next two years and may make direct investments. Earlier this year, the company launched a joint consumer financing venture with Credit Saison, a Japanese consumer financing firm, focused on the unbanked population.
In June Grab rolled out a suite of application programming interfaces (APIs) for developers, dubbed GrabPlatform. The platform is designed to help developers integrate their services within the company’s app, allowing them to leverage Grab’s user base along with its distribution channels, the company said in an announcement.
“GrabPlatform amplifies economic value for all of Southeast Asia, even more than what we could ever create by ourselves,” Grab CEO and co-founder Anthony Tan said. With the new version of Grab, the app comes with an updated home screen that includes easier access to payments. It also includes easy navigation to everyday services and a news feed that shows seasonal information and location reviews. In the announcement, Grab also unveiled an on-demand grocery delivery service, dubbed GrabFresh, that is integrated with Southeast Asian grocery delivery provider HappyFresh.
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