Grab said to be weighing secondary listing in Singapore after US SPAC merger

Photo: Grab website

Grab Holdings, Southeast Asia’s ride-hailing to delivery giant, is considering a secondary listing in its home market of Singapore after completing a Nasdaq listing via a $40 billion SPAC merger, three sources familiar with the matter said.

Listing on Singapore Exchange would enable Grab to have an investor base close to where its regional business is based, the people said, potentially offering its customers, drivers and merchant partners easier access to trade its shares.

Grab, a household name across Southeast Asia, is in the early stages of considering a secondary listing in the city-state, said the sources, who declined to be identified as they were not authorised to speak about the matter.

The potential Singapore listing plans come after Grab this week agreed a $40 billion merger with Altimeter Growth Corp., a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC), making this the world’s biggest SPAC deal.

Grab, which began as a ride-hailing business in 2012, now operates in eight countries and more than 400 cities and has expanded into food and grocery deliveries, as well as digital payments. Last year, it won a digital banking licence in Singapore.

It wasn’t clear how much Grab might aim to raise in any secondary listing, with financial terms and timetable still in the early stages of consideration, the sources said.

The company with the top valuation on the Singapore bourse is bank DBS Group Ltd, currently worth about S$74 billion ($55.4 billion) by capitalisation.

Grab and SGX declined to comment on the listing plans.

One of the sources said that while Grab has sufficient cash reserves and could end up raising only a small amount on SGX, a listing would mark a big win for the exchange.

SGX has mainly only seen large IPOs from real estate investment trusts. Hindered by a small base of retail investors in the city-state, it has struggled with low liquidity and valuations, forcing a spate of delistings and also discouraging big-ticket listings from regional high-growth companies.

The Hong Kong bourse, however, has benefited from diplomatic and political tensions between the United States and China that have led many Chinese firms to seek secondary listings in Hong Kong. Global fund managers have also been swapping China holdings from Wall Street to Hong Kong.

SGX has taken many steps to try to bulk up its stock market in recent years, and under Chief Executive Loh Boon Chye, who was appointed six years ago, it has acquired firms to transform itself into a multi-asset exchange.

Currently, there are 28 companies with a secondary listing on SGX, including Malaysia’s IHH Healthcare Bhd and Top Glove Corp Bhd and Hong Kong conglomerate Jardine Matheson Holdings.

Last year, AMTD International became the first NYSE-listed firm to list on SGX. It also became the first to take advantage of a dual-class share structure in Singapore.

For Grab, as part of the SPAC merger, it’s raising $4 billion from global investors including BlackRock, Temasek Holdings, Fidelity International, Malaysia’s Permodalan Nasional Bhd and some of Indonesia’s richest family groups.

Reuters

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.