In a sign of Grab’s ambitions in the financial services space, the Singapore ride-hailing firm reportedly had discussions to acquire payments provider 2C2P Pte. Unnamed sources claim that the company was one of various possible bidders interested in the payments firm, Bloomberg reported.
The Singapore-based payments startup opted to raise more capital to grow independently as a company instead. 2C2P and Grab representatives did not offer a comment per the report. Aung Kyaw Moe, who is a computer programmer and was born in Myanmar, started the company in 2003 in Bangkok. The company reportedly assists firms like Zara, Central Online Shopping and Thai Airways take various payment types online from clients in Southeast Asia.
And Grab, which Tan Hooi Ling and Anthony Tan started in 2012, has a value of $14 billion, per CB Insights. The firm is growing to become an all-in-one Southeast Asia “super app” — like WeChat in China from Tencent Holdings Ltd. In addition to ride-hailing, the company’s GrabPay service lets users order food and pay for rides, and the firm is growing into financial services like insurance and lending. The company also debuted a platform for financial technology last year.
The news comes as Grab raised over $4.5 billion in a round of funding led by SoftBank’s Vision Fund per news in March. Grab said SoftBank’s Vision Fund accounted for a third of the investment, according to a report in The Financial Times. The ride-hailing firm said the most recent fundraising effort was the largest private investment round to hit Southeast Asia.
Of the funding, $1.5 billion comes from the Vision Fund. Ming Maa, the company’s president, said the firm is still receiving a lot of interest from investors and could take on more funding this year. Grab “look[s] forward to welcoming more global industry leaders as partners in 2019,” Maa said in a statement, per The Financial Times.