Reuben Lai: From taxi to take-off
As part of Euromoney's 50th anniversary coverage, we profile some of the biggest names that we interviewed for our May Asia focus.
Grab is one of a cluster of fintechs that are revolutionizing grass-roots financial services in Asia. While Ant Financial and Tencent’s WeChat have disrupted China and Paytm leads a similar march in India, in southeast Asia, Grab and Indonesia’s Go-Jek are the standouts, launching dedicated financial services businesses off the back of ride-sharing platforms.
Grab was formed in 2012 by a group of friends irritated about how hard it was to get a taxi in Malaysia. It started out as a local equivalent of Uber (and went on to take over Uber’s business in southeast Asia last year) and remains first and foremost a transportation network, empowering individual drivers of cars and, particularly in Indonesia, motorbikes, with a strong financial inclusion objective.