Grab is planning to invest “several hundred million dollars” in Vietnam, according to a Reuters report. Grab president Ming Maa said the company sees “similar characteristics to Indonesia,” where it recently announced a USD 2 billion investment plan with SoftBank.
According to Reuters, Maa did not share any of the plan’s details, but expressed confidence that Vietnam could be Grab’s next growth market with its growing middle class and young consumers.
After beginning service in the country five years ago, Grab is now present in 43 provinces and cities in Vietnam, offering services including ride-hailing as well as food and package deliveries. In 2018, Grab partnered with local fintech firm Moca to launch a digital wallet.
In Vietnam, Grab said daily completed orders on GrabFood grew 250 times from June 2018 to May 2019. GrabFood has expanded to 15 cities and provinces in Vietnam since its initial launch in Ho Chi Minh City in June 2018.
Grab’s operations in Vietnam have not been entirely smooth. The firm was entangled in a lengthy lawsuit with local taxi firm Vinasun, and stricter government regulations for ride-hailing companies have caused the occasional hiccup.
For now, the company is waiting for the finalization of a government decree on regulations for transport companies that could potentially subject ride-hailing firms to greater scrutiny in terms of data privacy and cooperation with authorities.
According to Google and Temasek’s latest e-Conomy SEA report, Vietnam’s ride-hailing market was estimated to be worth about USD 500 million in 2018 and is expected to reach the USD 2 billion mark by 2025.
In Vietnam, besides conventional taxis, Grab competes with Go-Viet (a subsidiary of Gojek) and local ride-hailing firms FastGo, Be, and MyGo.