Saturday, March 6, 2021

Grab mulling US IPO listing in largest Southeast Asian company share offering

Grab reported this month that group revenue had recovered to be comfortably above pre-pandemic levels.

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Southeast Asian ride-hailing and food delivery giant Grab is exploring an initial public offering (IPO) listing in the US this year, buoyed by strong investor appetite for IPOs, sources have told Reuters.

The IPO could raise at least US$2 billion, one of the sources said, which would likely make it the largest overseas share offering by a Southeast Asian company.

“The market is good and the business is doing better than before. This should work well for public markets,” a source said.

The plans, including the size of the issue and timing, and which US stock exchange the company would be listed on, have not been finalised and are subject to market conditions, said the sources, who declined to be identified as they were not authorised to speak about the matter.

Singapore-based Grab declined to comment on the potential IPO.

Grab, whose backers include SoftBank Group Corp and Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group, has expanded rapidly from its beginnings as a ride-hailing venture in Malaysia in 2012 to become the region’s most valuable startup worth more than US$16 billion.

The company, which also offers financial services and recently gained a digital bank licence in Singapore, said this month that group revenue had recovered to be comfortably above pre-pandemic levels.

Grab chiefs also said its ride-hailing business is breaking even in all its operating markets, including Indonesia, the biggest. It expects its food delivery business to break even by the end of the year.

Sources maintain the IPO plans are gaining favour within the company after merger discussions with Indonesian rival Gojek were dropped.

Gojek and Indonesian e-commerce leader Tokopedia are in advanced talks for a US$18 billion merger ahead of a potential dual listing in Jakarta and the US, Reuters reported this month.

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