Grab: Southeast Asain Unicorn to Debut in Nasdaq

Southeast Asia’s biggest ride-hailing and delivery firm, Grab will make its debut on Thursday in Nasdaq after record $40 billion merger with a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC). The success of the deal will set tone for other Asian companies to engage in similar transactions.

The nine-year-old Asian unicorn began as ride-hailing application and now offers range of services from food deliveries, grocery shopping, payments, insurance and investment products in 465 cities in eight countries.

Grab was founded by Anthony Tan, chief executive of the company who developed the idea form a Harvard Business Scholl venture competition in 2011.

“What we have shown to the world is that homegrown tech companies can develop great technology that can compete globally, even when international players are in town … we can compete and win,” Tan told Reuters.

The listing would pay off early days investors such as Softbank Group Corp. and Didi Chuxing who backed the company as early as 2014. They were later joined by Toyota Motors, MUFG and UBER.

Grad in a statment said it completed its business combination with the SPAC, Altimeter Growth Corp. Grab will begin trading on Nasdaq under the ticker symbol “GRAB.”