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Ride-hailing service Grab seizes opportunity in Cambodia

Company to work with the government on infrastructure development

Grab, a Singapore-based ride-hailing company, has announced the start of service in Phnom Penh.   © Reuters

SINGAPORE -- Grab, Southeast Asia's top ride-hailing company, on Tuesday announced it is starting service in the Cambodian capital, Phnom Penh, as it seeks to increase its market share in the region.

It also signed a memorandum of understanding with Cambodia's Ministry of Public Works and Transport to support the country's infrastructure development.

One of the services Grab will offer in Cambodia is JustGrab. When a passenger books a ride, the service feature shows the exact fare, eliminating the need to haggle with the driver.

Grab is also working to make payments more convenient for drivers and passengers as Cambodia moves towards digital services. It is partnering with Wing Money, the country's leading mobile banking service, to set up accounts for drivers. Passengers can pay for rides in cash or using GrabPay, an app that allows them to pay with a credit card.

The launch of Grab services in Cambodia was announced on Tuesday. (Photo provided by Grab)

Grab is pushing aggressively to build market share across Southeast Asia. Backed by investors including China Investment Corp., Singapore's Temasek and China's Didi Chuxing, it has poured money into its taxi-hailing app business.

In August, it announced plans to invest $100 million in Myanmar over the next three years to promote its business in that country. In October, it obtained a $700 million funds to expand its fleet of rental cars in the region.

Grab now operates in 156 cities in eight Southeast Asian countries: Singapore, Indonesia, the Philippines, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, Myanmar and Cambodia. The company said it has more than 2.1 million drivers and over 72 million downloads for its app.

Grab said in a news release that it controls over 72% of the Southeast Asian market for private-vehicle hailing. It aims to have the region's largest car rental fleet by October 2018.

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