News / 20 April 2015

GrabTaxi raises a record-breaking $250M, plans to leave other regional players in the dust

It has been just over a month since its last round, and already Malaysia-based taxi booking appGrabTaxi is raising yet another round of funding. This time, it announced the raising of a spectacular US$250 million series D round, fully invested in by SoftBank Corp – what GrabTaxi claims is the largest investment ever made in a Southeast Asian internet company on public record thus far. SoftBank will become GrabTaxi’s largest investor.

To put that figure into perspective, close competitor EasyTaxi raised US$40 million in its latest series D funding round.

While the last funding round – roughly US$65 million – was huge, this deal blows it out of the water entirely, and brings its grand total to US$340 million raised over the last 14 months.

GrabTaxi claims that it is currently leading the pack in 17 cities across the six countries it is in – Malaysia, Philippines, Thailand, Singapore, Vietnam, and Indonesia. Meanwhile, Uber continues to face trouble with governing bodies across the region, and most recently was declared to be illegal in Thailand.

Here are some more numbers that show GrabTaxi’s stunning progress over the last year:

  • Number of taxi drivers in the network increasing by almost 300 percent to 60,000
  • Mobile app users growing 500 percent to 500,000 users
  • Mobile app downloads increasing 400 percent to 2.5 million
  • Three taxi bookings made every second, an 800 percent improvement

GrabTaxi group VP of marketing Cheryl Goh is clear that that the team will not take their current market leadership position in Southeast Asia for granted. By whatever means necessary, they want to extend their lead even further.

“Growth remains a key focus for GrabTaxi, and we now have a considerable war chest to accelerate our rapid expansion in Southeast Asia,” she says. “Our strong focus in this region also means that each of six GrabTaxi markets stands to receive a significant portion of funding, compared to larger players that have to stretch their funding much further.”

Goh adds that they haven’t even touched the last round of funding, but have “been truly blessed to have met investors who then refer us other investors who are the right fit.”

Beyond the funds, GrabTaxi will also benefit greatly from potential partnerships with other companies in the SoftBank network, though Goh was quick to add that it will “remain focused on Southeast Asia.”
See: GrabTaxi is one of Southeast Asia’s hottest startups. Here’s how it’s kicking ass

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