FastGo sets targets for rapid expansion in Southeast Asia

After establishing its presence in Singapore and Myanmar, the Vietnamese company plans to enter Indonesia and Thailand this year.

Vietnamese ride-hailing firm FastGo is gradually making its way into a number of Southeast Asian countries to challenge the region’s two powerhouses in this sector, Grab and Go Jek.

FastGo CEO Nguyen Huu Tuat said FastGo and its mother company NextTech had always had plans to enter foreign markets rather than just being a domestic platform, otherwise “we can easily be crushed by Grab, Go-Viet.”

Speaking at a recent start-up event held in Hanoi, Tuat said FastGo is ready for a rough ride in the region’s competitive ride-hailing sector for at least three years, and that the company aims to narrow the gap between itself and the two regional majors.

One year after its launch in June 2018, FastGo already has a presence in Singapore, Myanmar, and its home base Vietnam, and is eyeing entrances into Indonesia and Thailand this year.

In December 2018, FastGo began operations in Myanmar and became the first Vietnamese ride-hailing firm to establish operations across borders. FastGo claims that it has about 4,000 partner drivers and 100,000 users in Myanmar. In Singapore, CEO Nguyen Huu Tuat said, the firm was able to recruit 3,000 partner drivers within one month. In its home country Vietnam, FastGo says it has about 60,000 drivers.

Despite being a late-comer to the market, Tuat said FastGo focused on bringing various benefits to driver-partners and capitalized on the fact that other competitors already “trained and educated both drivers and consumers.”

Another advantage of FastGo would be its tight relationship with NextTech Group, which is dubbed as Vietnam’s equivalent of Alibaba. NextTech has established a network of products and services in e-commerce, fintech, and logistics. It has a presence in five Southeast Asian countries, the US, and China. NextTech Group’s payment startup mPOS was merged with Vimo earlier this month to become one entity called NextPay, which is also led by FastGo CEO Tuat.

FastGo reportedly received funding from VinaCapital Ventures in 2018. Since last year, it has been actively looking for new investors for its second investment round.