An unexpected headwind for Grab in Vietnam

An unexpected headwind for Grab in Vietnam 1

Top Stories of The Week

Hello there ,

Since Grab entered Vietnam in 2014, Grab has profoundly changed the daily lives of the country’s urbanites. We often joke that those who live in Hanoi or Ho Chi Minh City really can’t live without the Grab app.

Before Grab came along, we had to bargain with the xe ôm (motorbike) drivers for a good price. At times, some drivers would trick passengers like me into using a longer route.

Grab’s seven-year journey in Vietnam, however, was far from being smooth. The company was entangled in a lengthy lawsuit with traditional taxi provider Vinasun, which accused Grab of unfair competition practices in the country. Grab also had to spend a lot of resources persuading regulators here to officially legalize ride-hailing cars.

Like it has done elsewhere in Southeast Asia, Grab has also drawn so many of Vietnam’s tech talents, who believe their work can truly make a difference.

Former employees who helped build the company during its early days in Vietnam hope to reap some rewards from Grab’s upcoming historic listing in the US. Unfortunately, a legal hurdle in Vietnam prevents them from doing that.

But some ex-Grabbers told me that it’s not all about the money as those stocks also represent their attachment to the company. Meanwhile, Grab told Tech in Asia that the one-time payout it offered was fair – a sentiment that clearly wasn’t shared by all of the affected former staff.

— Thu Huong Le, journalist at Tech in Asia




An unexpected headwind for Grab in Vietnam 2

1. Grab Vietnam ex-staffers ‘disappointed’ over offer to give up shares
As its US listing nears, Grab is moving to ensure that its employee stock ownership plan meets Vietnam’s regulations. But some ex-Grabbers consider the payout too low and unfair.

2. Uncovering Southeast Asia’s hidden Grab and Gojek mafia
Updated: The Grab and Gojek alumni network is growing in the region, and the two firms’ public listings can start a wave of startups for Southeast Asia.

3. Social commerce app Kiko TV used this deck to secure SOSV backing this year
The company said it has seen over 120,000 downloads and acquired 90,000 monthly active users as of January this year.

4. Demystifying the Alibaba mafia
The ranks of Alibaba alumni founders have grown, but their influence largely remains in China.

5. How Hoolah fits into Shopback 2.0
The deal shouldn’t have come as a surprise, but it did.

6. Soonicorn Social Bella doubled its revenue in 2020
The company also said that its registered users went up 2x from its pre-pandemic numbers.

7. How BRI went from late adopter to frontrunner in Indonesia’s tech scene
Despite being a late entrant, BRI has aggressively built its startup ecosystem and is now at the forefront of Indonesia’s tech industry.

8. Sea Group’s financial health in 9 charts
We put our finger on the pulse of Sea Group, Southeast Asia’s largest internet company.

9. How Emtek’s recent buy can boost Grab’s digibank ambitions
Grab’s entry into Indonesia may be late compared to several competitors, but the fact that it’s a regional firm may be its core strength.

10. Can Tiki light up the overseas IPO torch for Vietnam?
Considered the “Amazon of Vietnam,” Tiki’s valuation is nearing US$1 billion. Can it stay in the ring with regional powerhouses Shopee and Lazada?




  • *Live* [Workshop] An equity framework for early-stage startups on November 23
    As a founder of an early-stage startup, setting the value of the equity you will be distributing to your investors and employees is one of the most important decisions. Tune in to our 30-minute workshop on November 23 with Andy Lee, CEO of stakeholder management software-as-a-service company Sprout, to learn all the essentials about building your own equity framework. This workshop is available to attend for free!
  • Scale-up Masterclass with Girish Mathrubootham on November 23
    Join Freshworks founder and CEO Girish Mathrubootham for an exclusive masterclass where he’ll discuss the fundamentals of scaling up and the less-spoken challenges that founders will encounter on their scale-up journey.
  • “How startups can build customer growth & retention machines” roundtable on November 24
    Over 70% of startups don’t have formal CX strategies, which are integral to growth and customer retention. Sign up for this virtual roundtable to learn from startup leaders in Southeast Asia on how they’ve built scalable customer service and CX through omnichannel strategies.
  • Solve government and public sector challenges with AWS Startup Ramp on November 30
    Breaking into the public sector is not an easy feat for early stage startups. Join our webinar on Nov 30 to learn about AWS Startup Ramp, which provides technical support & mentorship that help startups navigate the complex requirements. Register for your seat today!






Senior Fullstack Software Engineer Jogja Office at MyRobin Indonesia
Yogyakarta, Indonesia IDR 7,000,000 – 14,000,000


Graphic Designer at Rocketindo
Jakarta, Indonesia IDR 7,000,000 – 12,000,000


Partnership Manager at Advotics
Jakarta, Indonesia


Backend Engineer (NodeJS Developer) at
Jakarta, Indonesia


Software Engineer (Front End) at Tech in Asia
Singapore, Singapore SGD 4,000 – 6,000


Business Development Executive at AiChat
Singapore, Singapore SGD 3,500 – 5,000


P.S. Don’t miss out on the biggest tech news and analysis. Add to your address book, contacts, or safe sender list. Or simply move us into your inbox.

Too many emails?
Switch to a different frequency or get new content through our preference center, or .

You can also break our hearts and remove yourself from all Tech in Asia emails over here


Tech in Asia’s newsletters are handcrafted daily with love – and sometimes powered by good kopi. 

Copyright © 2021 Tech in Asia, All rights reserved.
63 Robinson Road, Singapore 068894

An unexpected headwind for Grab in Vietnam 3
-------- You also should read more news below: ----- [arpw limit="10" post_type="post" post_status="publish" thumbnail="false" thumbnail_size="arpw-thumbnail" excerpt="true" excerpt_length="2000" ]

Related Articles

Back to top button