Samsung forges alliance with Singapore-based ride-hailing firm Grab

Lim Chang-won Reporter Posted : 2018-02-02 14:30 Updated : 2018-02-13 15:58
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[Yonhap News Photo]

SEOUL, Feb. 02 (Aju News) -- Grab, a Singapore-based ride-hailing firm, has forged a strategic alliance with Samsung Electronics to develop customized solutions for Southeast Asia's ride-hailing industry, including micro-financing schemes for Grab's driver-partners, improved customer booking and in-car experiences and new mobility solutions.

It was Grab's second business deal with a South Korean company this year. In January, Hyundai Motor acquired a stake in Grab, which offers ride-hailing and logistics services through its app in Singapore and neighboring Southeast Asian nations. Along with joint marketing, Hyundai and Grab will develop a new car-hailing platform using eco-friendly vehicles.

Under a multi-year memorandum of understanding, Grab and Samsung agreed to expand into Southeast Asia's fragmented mobile payments ecosystem and provide a mobile payments solution, the two companies said in a statement released on Friday.  

More than 2.3 million Grab driver-partners would have access to a micro-financing program focused on giving them access to robust mobile technology, which will reduce the cost of purchasing a smartphone and also lower maintenance costs, according to the statement. "This is part of Grab’s Better 365 programme that provides more benefits and cost savings to drivers."

Grab will introduce more GrabKiosks and GrabBooths in busy consumer hubs such as shopping malls, hotels and airports, featuring Samsung devices with the Grab enterprise app pre-installed and allowing individuals and concierge services to book a Grab ride for themselves or others, even when they do not have data connectivity, the statement read.

"Grab and its content partners will pilot in-car multimedia services in Singapore, installing Samsung tablets inside cars for customers to view infotainment content, if they choose to, during their ride."

Samsung acquired Harman in early 2017. The two have unveiled the industry's first 5G antenna to provide fast data connections for connected cars and a Digital Cockpit for autonomous cars which provide personal customization and display car controls and other information on a center screen or multiple screens.