Grab partners KBank to introduce mobile wallet in Thailand

Janet Ong
Finance Editor
Reuben Lai, senior managing director, Grab Financial (left) shaking hands with Patchara Samalapa, President, Kasikornbank. (Photo: Grab)

Grab announced a partnership with Thailand’s Kasikornbank (KBank) to offer its mobile wallet and other other financial services by early next year.

KBank has also made a US$50 million (S$68.5 million) strategic investment in Grab as part of the ride-hailing firm’s ongoing fundraising round that includes Toyota Motor Corp, Microsoft Corp, Booking Holdings and Hyundai Motor Group.

“This partnership makes Grab Financial the first mobile payments platform to launch e-money-licensed payments services across ASEAN-6 and underlines the strength of our partnership-based strategy,” Reuben Lai, senior managing director at Grab Financial, said. Grab launched its fintech platform Grab Financial in March with Japan’s Credit Saison.

A co-branded mobile payment application GrabPay by KBank will be available in the Grab app by early 2019, the companies said in a joint statement Thursday (8 November).

The mobile wallet will allow Grab customers to pay for transport and delivery services, transfer funds, purchase products and services online, and make QR-code payments in restaurants and shops across Thailand.

Through Thailand’s national e-payments scheme called PromptPay, all three million QR-enabled merchants in the country will be able to accept GrabPay by KBank. Features from KBank’s PLUS app and the Grab app will be integrated across both platforms, the statement said.

KBank and Grab will also work together to jointly offer products, including loans to help merchants grow their business and access to Grab for Business to improve corporate transport expense management, as well as increase brand awareness and engagement through Grab’s advertising solution.

Yesterday Grab announced Hyundai and Kia teamed up to invest an additional US$250 million into the company, bringing funds raised to US$2.7 billion. The companies also formed a partnership to pilot electrical vehicle programmes throughout Southeast Asia.

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