Southeast Asia’s most valuable start-up, Grab, faces biggest crisis in company’s history

By Poovenraj Kanagaraj

Singapore-based ride hailing service provider, Grab is facing its biggest crisis ever. The virus outbreak which has consumed almost and every business in the region is also affecting Grab.

Chief executive officer, Anthony Tan has warned that the outbreak has created significant challenges for the startup which may result in cutting costs and managing capital.

“Covid-19 is the single biggest crisis to affect Grab in the eight years of our existence,” Tan said in a statement to investors and partners on Monday. “It has had an unprecedented impact on our operations, our business and the livelihoods of our partners.”

In a news report by Bloomberg, Tan’s comments signal one of the many troubles companies under the SoftBank Group Corp’s portfolio are facing. Softbank had taken a blow last week, where the company forecasted a record 1.35 trillion yen operating loss for the fiscal year ended in March.

Bloomberg further reported that the ride-hailing service has been trying to offset some of the impact with food delivery. A move that has since been adopted by many others in Malaysia ever since the start of the outbreak.

Tan further pointed out that there will be tough decisions and trade-offs to make as they continue to evaluate the impact of the outbreak on the business.

“We will right-size our costs, manage our capital efficiently and make the necessary operational adjustments in order to weather the storm and carve out a path to profitability.”


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