Grab Launches GrabMaps To Tap Into US$1b Southeast Asia Market

By Chong Jinn Xiung

The Southeast Asian super app is diversifying its enterprise solutions and plans to take on incumbents like Google in the digital maps business

Tatler Asia
Photo: Getty Images
Cover  Photo: Getty Images

Grab has fully entered the digital maps business with the official launch of its new enterprise service, GrabMaps. With this, the Southeast Asian super app will be tapping into a market opportunity worth US$1 billion.

According to its co-founder and director Tan Hooi Ling, the company’s plans to commercialise the technology is a significant step forward for Grab’s expanding enterprise division. She says it will license the data it collects from its drivers and users to tech companies, logistics providers and telcos.

Grab first started developing its mapmaking platform in 2017. Since then, Tan says Grab has collected 33 million points of interest and other rich data such as street imagery, street names and traffic signs, and it will add 5 million more by the end of 2022. Previously utilising third-party map services to power the app, Grab now expects GrabMaps to be fully self-sufficient by Q3 this year.

Grab is up against existing players like Google and TomTom, but the company believes that it has an edge over the incumbents as it is able to leverage the abundant crowdsourced data from the eight Southeast Asian markets it operates in. This includes tapping on real-time feedback from partner drivers and images captured from cameras attached to driver’s helmets. In addition, Grab says it is able to collect data on road closures, accidents and toll changes in real-time.

Besides making its foray into the maps business, Grab has been focusing on its financial services as it combined its digital payments, insurance and services under the GrabFin brand in May. It also formed a consortium with Singapore telco, Singtel, to secure digital bank licenses in both the city state and Malaysia in 2020 and 2022 respectively.

See more news about the Gen.T community.

© 2022 Tatler Asia Limited. All rights reserved.