As the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic and resulting restrictions bite, ride-hailing platform Grab is asking its employees across the region to take on flexible working arrangements such as no-pay leave, reduced working hours, and sabbaticals.
In March, Grab had announced that it will cut the salaries of its senior executives by up to 20%, for this year.
“We are taking proactive measures to manage our cost base to focus on capital efficiency,” a Grab spokesperson told DealStreetAsia.
The coronavirus pandemic has severely restricted business activity and movement in Southeast Asia, and the measures would allow Grab to “flexibly adjust up or down our resource needs,” the spokesperson said.
“There is a lot of uncertainty as to the depth and duration of the pandemic and we don’t know how long the economic recession will last and we are taking active steps to conserve cash and manage our employee base.”
The platform has also sent a note to its driver-partners, cautioning that it may have to stop providing additional financial support.
According to the note that was published in the media in Singapore, Grab Singapore’s Head of Transport Andrew Chan explained that the company’s revenues have continued to fall.
He cautioned that Grab may no longer be able to provide extra financial support to its drivers if the circuit breaker is further extended.
Chan reportedly said that there were expectations that normal activity would resume on May 4. The Circuit Breaker in Singapore, which requires most of the population to stay home and limit movement to within the neighbourhood, has been extended to June 1.
From April 6, Grab has waived or reduced commissions for drivers. Drivers who rent cars from the company can also opt to defer 20% of rental costs until October 2020.