Hyundai Motors funds Grab to explore new business growth avenues

Hyundai to invest in Grab in Series G funding round

Hyundai reportedly invested tens of billions of won to acquire a stake in Grab so it could get the opportunity to provide vehicles to the Singapore-headquartered company's car-hailing services.

Hyundai Motor is joining hands with Southeast Asian ride-hailing service Grab to break into one of the world's fastest-growing markets.

"As we move into the next stage of Grab's growth, we look forward to collaborating closely with Hyundai to continue innovating new mobility solutions for Southeast Asia", said Grab's Co=-Founder and CEO, Anthony Tan.

"Hyundai Motor Group's ongoing collaboration with top global technology companies is a testament to our "Open Innovation" spirit that will prepare us for continued leadership as transportation and mobility undergo an unprecedented evolution", said executive Vice President of Hyundai's Auto Intelligence Division, Seung Ho Hwang. Other investors in this Series G funding round - Grab's largest so far - include China's ride-hailing giant Didi Chuxing, SoftBank and Toyota Tsusho.

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According to the release, the deal is part of Hyundai's "efforts to transform people's lives with disruptive technologies and services that materialize its visions for future mobility - clean, connected and freedom in mobility".

Hyundai's interest in Southeast Asia has grown since South Korean companies were targeted previous year in a Chinese backlash over Seoul's decision to deploy a US missile defence system against Beijing's objections. They did not disclose the value of Hyundai's investment. Partnering with WaiveCar, Hyundai in January 2017 launched a car-sharing program that runs on advertising money, using Ioniq Electric model in the US. Ioniq is the world's first model that offers three electrified powertrain-hybrid, plug-in hybrid and pure battery electric - in a single body type.

This latest round of investment by industry bigwigs should bolster Grab's position in Southeast Asia where it competes with key rivals such as the embattled Uber in markets like Singapore and Malaysia, as well as Go-Jek in Indonesia.

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