Honda Invests in Ride Hailing Platform – Grab

Japanese automotive major, Honda Motor Company has finally entered the recent slew of manufacturers jumping in and collaborating with online ride hailing service providers.

The company has invested in South-east Asian ride hailing start-up, Grab, which is the sole biggest competitor of American ride hailing pioneer, Uber.

2016 Honda BR-V Exterior

Honda is the major investor in this venture, alongside Softbank, which is one of the world’s leading investment banking firms and has been a major investor in a lot of new start-ups and technology initiatives across the world.

While the respective contributions are undisclosed, both Honda and Softbank are making a cumulative contribution of 750 million dollars to Grab, which would then give them substantial stake in the company and would allow for strong names for Grab to back on for its future plan of setting up a major platform, as well as provide driver oriented training programs.

Grab offers both taxi as well as motorcycle hailing services through its online platform, which works majorly through Grab’s mobile application.

Ming Maa, president, Grab, said, “We are in the planning stages on exactly what a full partnership will look like, and there are many different prongs of that. One prong would obviously include selling Honda motorbikes within the region. We would welcome expanding the partnership to four-wheeled vehicles.”

Grab was recently valued at 3 billion dollars and apart from these two Japanese majors, the company also sees investment from Chinese ride hailing platform major and Uber rival, Didi Chuxing, which is also one of the major investment areas of Softbank.

Ride hailing services are on a boom across the globe and most automotive companies are developing such strategic partnership to counter the loss of sales in regular passenger cars as more and more number of people opt for and are moving towards hailing taxis on a need basis, rather than owning and keeping a car for full time.

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