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Grab’s Payments Business Helps Drive First Adjusted Profit


Singapore’s Grab has logged its first profit on an adjusted basis as it looks to expand.

The ride-hailing and delivery giant shared that news as it released quarterly earnings on Thursday (Nov. 9).

“And while this is an important milestone, it represents just one step in our journey as a public company,” Chief Operating Officer Alex Hungate said.

Among the highlights mentioned by Hungate was Grab Unlimited, the company’s subscription program, whose members made up a third of delivery gross market value during the quarter and spent more than four times more on food deliveries. 

The company also saw “frequency and retention uplifts among subscribers,” Hungate added, with retention among subscribers about twice as high as non subscribers. 

The earnings report showed revenue growing 61% year-over-year to reach $615 million, with delivery revenues up 79% and financial services revenues up 156%, thanks to improved monetization of the company’s payment business. 

Users of the company’s GrabPay tool spend four times as much and have a higher retention rate than cash users, company officials said.

“The strong revenue growth was driven by all segments of our business. Mobility revenues were up 31% year on year, and 11% quarter on quarter to hit $231,000,000,” said Peter Oey, Grab’s chief financial officer. “Our efforts to deepen user penetration by more economical service offerings have enabled us to capture the growth in demand.” 

Meanwhile, the company is continuing in its effort to acquire Trans-cab. Last month, Singapore’s competition watchdog, the Competition and Consumer Commission of Singapore (CCCS), said it had concerns about the proposed deal, which would see Grab take ownership of the city-state’s third-biggest cab company.

“Third-party feedback received by CCCS suggests concerns on the effect of Grab’s ownership of the Trans-cab fleet on Trans-cab drivers’ usage of rival ride-hail platforms, which may raise barriers to expansion and entry for Grab’s rival ride-hail platforms,” the CCCS said. 

Hungate countered Thursday that Grab sees the acquisition as “a win-win situation for consumers and drivers in Singapore.” 

Drivers will continue to preserve their flexibility to earn through Grab and similar platforms, while riders will be able to find transportation more easily, he said.