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Grab gets US$150m investment from Yamaha

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Grab is attracting more global backers after the ride-hailing service defeated Uber Technologies Inc in South-east Asia. A motorcycle maker has become the latest investor.

[BEIJING] Grab is attracting more global backers after the ride-hailing service defeated Uber Technologies Inc in South-east Asia. A motorcycle maker has become the latest investor.

Yamaha Motor Co agreed to invest US$150 million in Grab and the two will collaborate on motorcycle-ride services in South-east Asia with a focus on Indonesia, the Japanese manufacturer said in a statement Thursday.

Singapore-based Grab is teaming up with global giants to expand its reach after forcing Uber out of South-east Asia earlier this year. Toyota Motor Corp said in June it was investing US$1 billion in Grab, and Hyundai Motor Co last month agreed to put an additional US$250 million into the company and sell a fleet of electric vehicles to the ride-hailing service. Carmakers and technology companies alike are working toward a future where autonomous robo-taxis will lessen the need for individual car ownership.

The focus on Indonesia means Grab is intensifying its push against local contender Go-Jek, a Jakarta-based startup that has gained popularity with its motorbike ride-hailing app. Go-Jek, in turn, started its car ride-hailing service in Grab's home turf last month.

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Yamaha said the pact will make it easier for Grab drivers to buy motorbikes, while the motorcycle maker plans to leverage Grab's ride-hailing know-how in future product development.

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