Thailand’s Central Group planning to invest $200 million in Grab


Central Group, Thailand’s biggest shopping Centre and department store operator, is planning to invest US$200 million (6.3 billion Thai baht) in ride-hailing giant ‘Grab’, according to sources ‘familiar with the matter’ today.

The deal seals a strategic partnership where the Thai retail giant will help Grab expand its business in Thailand. Central Group would invest in Grab’s Thai business unit.

Today Grab and Central Group have both declined to comment.

Talks of the Central Group buying a substantial minority stake in Grab’s Thai business was first mooted in an article in Bloomberg last year.

Grab, which bought out Uber Technologies business in Southeast Asia, is expanding beyond its roots as a ride-hailing app by adding services such as food delivery, payments and logistics. GrabFood is now available in six major Southeast Asian countries and GrabExpress, its logistics and goods delivery service, in 150 cities, according to the company.

Analysts believe the tie in is a perfect fit for Central as they look online for growth and wish to keep their delivery platforms in house.

The Singapore-based Grab last year outlined ambitious fundraising plans and predicted that sales will double to $2 billion in 2019.

Courtesy: Published at The Thaiger on January 30, 2019

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