In a statement released today (10 July), Grab announced that they are launching GrabPlatform as part of their open platform strategy to become an everyday superapp for Southeast Asian (SEA) users.
According to them, GrabPlatform is a suite of APIs for partners to integrate their services with components of Grab’s technology like logistics, payments, user authentication, messaging, insights, and mapping.
Users can expect more daily, functional services such as on-demand grocery delivery service, a new app experience that gives us “single tap access to all services” and a news feed.
For partners, GrabPlatform gives them access to core Grab assets exclusive to them so they can scale to serve more customers in the region.
A Superapp For Everyone
GrabPlatform is a place for curated Grab partners who can offer services relevant to users’ daily lives as well as have the potential to offer jobs to more micro-entrepreneurs and small businesses.
Partners can tap on Grab’s distribution network of 7.1 million drivers, delivery partners, agents, and merchants; a wide SEA presence across 225 cities in eight countries, and localised SEA technology and products.
GrabPlatform users can “actively engage” Grab users using Grab’s news feed and GrabRewards loyalty programme through reviews and promotions.
Grab’s CEO and Co-founder, Anthony Tan, said, “Southeast Asia is set to be the fourth largest economy by 2050. More people are moving into the middle class, technology infrastructure is catching up, and companies must adapt fast to shifting emerging market opportunities.
GrabPlatform aims to reduce “operational complexity” while letting partners focus on growing their business.
“Our goal is for one Southeast Asian app to offer all the daily essentials you need, anytime you need it, and even before you know you need it,” said Jerald Singh, Head of Product at Grab.
“Grab’s customers will enjoy amazing new services like shopping, utilities, entertainment and more as part of Southeast Asia’s most useful everyday superapp.”
The company crossed two billion rides on 7 July 2018, taking five years and four months to hit one billion rides and less than nine months to hit the next billion.
Grab will be the first SEA company to hit revenues of US$1 billion by the end of 2018. Gross Merchandise Volume (GMV) more than doubled over the last 12 months.
GrabFood expanded from two to six countries in the second quarter, and grew nine times in GMV over the last 12 months.
From January to May 2018, Grab Financial’s total payment volume more than doubled and is now the leading mobile payments platform in Southeast Asia, according to Grab’s statement.
A New Service And Interface
The ride-sharing company has partnered with HappyFresh, a SEA-based grocery delivery service present in Indonesia, Malaysia, and Thailand, to roll out its latest service called GrabFresh.
The statement noted that since people “already use Grab to commute, get lunch, deliver packages, and pay for shopping”, they can skip the queues and buy groceries in the comfort of their homes with GrabFresh.
Drivers and delivery partners on GrabExpress, the logistics service of Grab, will send the groceries within an hour or at a scheduled time.
Users can select from over 100,000 grocery products from over 50 supermarket chains and specialty grocery chains.
GrabFresh also engages personal shoppers, who are responsive to instructions, to pick out the freshest groceries, and customers can reject items that are not satisfactory “at the door”.
Guillem Segarra, CEO of HappyFresh said, “From our research, 70% of grocery delivery app users shop at least once per week, and they like to shop from the stores that they are familiar with.”
“What they want is for their preferred items to be available and ready, when they want it.”
“Grab is the best possible partner we could have. The large number of couriers that they have allows us to add more delivery slots and improve delivery time. We can also scale and internationalise efficiently,” he added.
GrabFresh beta will be available in Jakarta this month; Thailand and Malaysia will have this service by the end of 2018, and other markets will follow.
Indonesian users can also expect ‘Pulsa’, Grab’s prepaid mobile phone credits top up service.
The delivery service can be accessed within the Grab app.
Along with these new services, the Grab app will have a news feed feature in partnership with Yahoo!.
It provides users with localised location reviews and useful seasonal information. For example, the time to break fast during Ramadan, read reviews of latest movies and restaurants nearby.
This feature will be available in Singapore, Malaysia, and Philippines from this month. Other local news partnerships will be announced in other countries soon.
The new Grab experience will begin to roll out in Singapore and Indonesia on iOS from today, and on Android from 18 July. Other markets will have the new Grab experience by third quarter of 2018.
Entrepreneurs and businesses can be part of GrabPlatform via Grab Ventures.
Featured Image Credit: Grab