Breaking News
Investing Pro 0
💎 Access the Market Tools Trusted by Thousands of Investors Get Started

Exclusive-Grab to cut more costs amid economic chill

Published Dec 15, 2022 01:41AM ET Updated Dec 15, 2022 05:25AM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This article has already been saved in your Saved Items
© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: A Grab logo is pictured at the Money 20/20 Asia Fintech Trade Show in Singapore March 21, 2019. REUTERS/Anshuman Daga
Add to/Remove from Watchlist
Add to Watchlist
Add Position

Position added successfully to:

Please name your holdings portfolio

By Anshuman Daga

SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Grab Holdings, Southeast Asia's biggest ride-hailing and food delivery firm, is cutting more costs to cope with an uncertain economic backdrop, the Singapore-based company's CEO told staff in a memo.

The measures include a freeze on most hiring, salary freezes for senior managers and cuts in travel and expense budgets, co-founder and CEO Anthony Tan said in the memo which was issued on Wednesday and viewed by Reuters.

The contents of the memo were confirmed by a company spokesperson.

While Grab has already been trying to stem losses by shutting some business units this year and reducing spending on incentives, the latest moves underscore the extent to which it is bracing for tougher conditions in 2023.

Decade-old Grab, a household name across the eight Southeast Asian countries it operates in, had about 8,800 staff at the end of last year.

Last month, Grab raised its 2022 revenue forecast, reported a narrower adjusted operating loss and said its food and grocery delivery business broke even three quarters ahead of its expectations.

Grab and rivals such as Indonesia's PT GoTo Gojek Tokopedia Tbk benefited from a boom in food delivery services during the COVID-19 pandemic, but growth is slowing and ride-hailing businesses have not recovered to pre-pandemic levels.

Companies are also being affected by sharp increases in costs and muted growth in key markets.

GoTo announced layoffs of 1,300 workers, or 12% of its workforce in November, joining a wave of tech firms retrenching globally. Southeast Asia's largest e-commerce firm Shopee has also cut jobs in various countries and shut some overseas operations as its parent Sea struggles with losses.

Grab's share price has halved this year, while GoTo has slumped by 75% amid a global sell-off in the tech sector and investor concerns about profitability and slower growth.

In September, Grab's chief operating officer, Alex Hungate, told Reuters the company did not expect to have to make mass layoffs. Instead, he said, Grab would selectively hire, while reining in its financial services ambitions.

Tan said in the memo that Southeast Asia had not, and would not, be spared from rising prices and interest rates, and the consequent effects on growth.

Grab would also "freeze the majority of current open job requisitions which are not in offer stage," he said, adding requests to fill critical roles would need to be approved.

He said senior managers would not be eligible for raises in their upcoming reviews, while the travel and expense budget would be reduced by another 20% from the last guidance.

"None of these decisions were easy, but are meant to help us get leaner and fitter, as we accelerate even faster towards sustainable, profitable growth," Tan said, adding that "more so than ever," Grab's employees "need to adopt a frugal and prudent mindset as we prepare for 2023."

Exclusive-Grab to cut more costs amid economic chill

Related Articles

Add a Comment

Comment Guidelines

We encourage you to use comments to engage with other users, share your perspective and ask questions of authors and each other. However, in order to maintain the high level of discourse we’ve all come to value and expect, please keep the following criteria in mind:  

  •            Enrich the conversation, don’t trash it.

  •           Stay focused and on track. Only post material that’s relevant to the topic being discussed. 

  •           Be respectful. Even negative opinions can be framed positively and diplomatically. Avoid profanity, slander or personal attacks directed at an author or another user. Racism, sexism and other forms of discrimination will not be tolerated.

  • Use standard writing style. Include punctuation and upper and lower cases. Comments that are written in all caps and contain excessive use of symbols will be removed.
  • NOTE: Spam and/or promotional messages and comments containing links will be removed. Phone numbers, email addresses, links to personal or business websites, Skype/Telegram/WhatsApp etc. addresses (including links to groups) will also be removed; self-promotional material or business-related solicitations or PR (ie, contact me for signals/advice etc.), and/or any other comment that contains personal contact specifcs or advertising will be removed as well. In addition, any of the above-mentioned violations may result in suspension of your account.
  • Doxxing. We do not allow any sharing of private or personal contact or other information about any individual or organization. This will result in immediate suspension of the commentor and his or her account.
  • Don’t monopolize the conversation. We appreciate passion and conviction, but we also strongly believe in giving everyone a chance to air their point of view. Therefore, in addition to civil interaction, we expect commenters to offer their opinions succinctly and thoughtfully, but not so repeatedly that others are annoyed or offended. If we receive complaints about individuals who take over a thread or forum, we reserve the right to ban them from the site, without recourse.
  • Only English comments will be allowed.
  • Any comment you publish, together with your profile, will be public on and may be indexed and available through third party search engines, such as Google.

Perpetrators of spam or abuse will be deleted from the site and prohibited from future registration at’s discretion.

Write your thoughts here
Are you sure you want to delete this chart?
Post also to:
Replace the attached chart with a new chart ?
Your ability to comment is currently suspended due to negative user reports. Your status will be reviewed by our moderators.
Please wait a minute before you try to comment again.
Thanks for your comment. Please note that all comments are pending until approved by our moderators. It may therefore take some time before it appears on our website.
Are you sure you want to delete this chart?
Replace the attached chart with a new chart ?
Your ability to comment is currently suspended due to negative user reports. Your status will be reviewed by our moderators.
Please wait a minute before you try to comment again.
Add Chart to Comment
Confirm Block

Are you sure you want to block %USER_NAME%?

By doing so, you and %USER_NAME% will not be able to see any of each other's's posts.

%USER_NAME% was successfully added to your Block List

Since you’ve just unblocked this person, you must wait 48 hours before renewing the block.

Report this comment

I feel that this comment is:

Comment flagged

Thank You!

Your report has been sent to our moderators for review
Continue with Google
Sign up with Email