TOKYO – Japanese carmaker Toyota Motor said on Wednesday it will invest $1 million in Singapore-based ride-share company Grab to develop new mobility technologies.
The agreement, boosting the collaboration that both companies began in 2017, is aimed at achieving connectivity for Grab’s rental car fleet across Southeast Asia, and at rolling out connected services throughout the region that utilize vehicle data stored on Toyota’s Mobility Services Platform, the company said in a statement.
In addition, Toyota and Grab are contemplating collaborations in financial services that the Singapore firm offers to its clients, as well as vehicle maintenance services.
A Toyota executive will be appointed to Grab’s board of directors and a dedicated Toyota team member will be seconded to Grab as an executive officer to accelerate decision making, with Toyota considering more personnel exchanges in the future.
“This investment by Toyota is the largest-ever by an automotive manufacturer in the global ride-hailing sector,” Grab said in a statement on Wednesday.
“We are thrilled to have Toyota on board as a long-term, strategic partner of Grab’s,” said the co-founder and CEO of Grab, Anthony Tan, adding “this strong partnership will enable us to become the one-stop mobility platform in Southeast Asia.”
Toyota and Grab have been collaborating since August 2017, when they signed an agreement to analyze customers’ driving patterns with the aim of designing services in areas such as insurance, finance and maintenance.
Grab, which operates in fields of ride-sharing, food and parcel delivery, mobile payments and financial services, has a presence in 217 cities in eight countries in the region.
In March, Grab bought a stake in rival Uber, ending a battle between the two for regional dominance.