News: Singapore-based Grab gets Microsoft’s boost for digital innovation

Funding & Investment

Singapore-based Grab gets Microsoft’s boost for digital innovation

Grab will use Microsoft Azure cloud platform in exchange for investment, help in AI, machine learning and tech. The investment could help fill about 400 positions.
Singapore-based Grab gets Microsoft’s boost for digital innovation

Singapore-based ride-hailing, food delivery and financial services giant Grab, has roped in Microsoft Corp. as its investor. Grab will use Microsoft’s expertise in cloud technology and AI while Microsoft is making a “strategic investment” in the Southeast Asian market.

This is just the first step in an impending five-year long alliance. “As a global technology leader, Microsoft’s investment into Grab highlights our position as the leading homegrown technology player in the region,” Ming Maa, President of Grab.  

Chin Yin Ong, Grab’s Head of People, in an earlier interaction with People Matters, said the company is focused on a sustainable and scalable model wherein the customers and employees should benefit from the tech-first approach that shapes Grab’s hiring, performance management and even consumer experience.

“It is about working together rather than the fear of technology taking over. The other thing is how you look at tech in helping you to achieve speed, scale, and personalization. Those are the 3 things that technology will be very good at doing,” Chin Yin Ong said.

In light of the recent investment from Microsoft, Grab has 99 engineering-related vacancies, 31 positions for Data Science & Analytics, 31 in IT & Security and 59 vacancies in the Marketing & Communications department, according to their Careers portal. The Sales, Business Development & Strategy department is growing with about 101 vacancies across various countries where Grab offers its services.

Grab, a mobile online-to-offline (O2O) platform for delivery services, operates in more than 235 cities across various Southeast Asian countries. Maa said Grab’s various services will use Microsoft Azure as its cloud platform.

Although the investment amount remains unspecified, Microsoft’s contribution will count towards the $3 billion that Grab hopes to raise by December 2018, according to Maa.

Singapore’s delivery-giant and service provider will use Microsoft’s tech features to detect fraud and AI for facial-recognition of drivers and chatbots. It is basically an endeavor to improve UI & UX for regional customers by using Microsoft’s sophisticated translation tech.

For Microsoft’s Executive Vice President Peggy Johnson, the partnership offers the team a chance to improve the consumer experience in ‘delivery of digital services’ in the Southeast Asian countries.

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Topics: Funding & Investment, HR Technology, #Hiring

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