Softbank is all set to pour 1$ Bn in Southeast Asia’s ride-hailing major Grab, according to TechCrunch. SoftBank, which is already the largest shareholder of Grab, will reportedly make the investment through its SoftBank Vision Fund. The investment could reach as much as $1.5 Bn, TechCrunch claimed after citing an unnamed source.
Softbank and Grab have so far refused to comment over the latest fundraising rumor.
The unconfirmed report has come closely on the heels of SoftBank Vision’s recent investment spree in three Asian tech unicorns. This includes $1 billion round for India’s largest budget hotel company Oyo Rooms. Grab was also one of the co-investors in this round. Other two investments included $2 Bn funding for Korea’s Coupang and $1.2 billion round for Indonesia’s Tokopedia.
If one closely looks into Softbank’s investment pattern in these three tech unicorns then it is clear that the Japanese giant is following a fixed pattern.
The Japanese company was already an existing investor in these three startups. However, it has transferred the stake to its vision fund after making all the recent investments through vision fund itself. It is highly likely that the Japanese conglomerate will follow pretty much the same pattern for its latest fundraising round for Grab.
Grab, on other hand, may not show any major desperation to close the SoftBank’s funding round. This is because the Singapore headquartered company is evidently sitting on very good cash reserves. This is also evident from the fact that the company is currently engaged in giving final touches to the Series H round that is likely to swell its coffers by another $3 Bn.
Southeast Asian ride-hailing major has so far raised $6.8 billion through multiple investment rounds, according to Crunchbase. The company boasts a valuation of around $11 Bn and counts Toyota, Microsoft, Yamaha Motors amongst its high profile investors.
Grab’s future prospects appear to be quite bright as it is now the undisputed leader in Southeast Asia’s fast growing ride-hailing market. It became an undisputed leader after it bought Uber’s Southeast Asian business in a swap deal. The swap deal gave Uber 27.5% stake in Grab.
The company claims that over 130 million downloads and completed more than 2.5 billion rides till date.