GrabTaxi eyes 'global talent' with Seattle engineering site

Southeast Asian ride-sharing platform is opening a new office and engineering facility in Seattle, US, where it hopes to tap ideas and talent to support its regional ecosystem.
Written by Eileen Yu, Senior Contributing Editor

GrabTaxi has unveiled plans to establish its first outfit outside Southeast Asia in Seattle, US, which will enable the ride-sharing services provider to tap the "global" talent pool to support its ecosystem.

Slated to open later this month, the Seattle office will look to build an engineering team in the country, which will support GrabTaxi's current research and development (R&D) facilities in Singapore and Beijing.

Among the new hires is Raman Narayanan, who is the company's technical advisor and a former Microsoft Distinguished Engineer. The new hire also will lead GrabTaxi's recruitment efforts in the US, which already include the appointments of engineers and is expected to ramp up throughout the new year.

According to GrabTaxi CEO Anthony Tan, its US presence would help the company expand its "global talent reach".

"As we continue to build an on-demand ecosystem in Southeast Asia, it is important to look all over the world for innovative ideas and people that will help us continue to succeed in that mission," Tan said.

Narayanan noted the opportune time to join his new employer, as on-demand services had "changed the way people move, commute, shop, and consume". He added that the US team would look support the development of GrabTaxi's capabilities in cloud computing, storage, big data management, predictive analytics, and machine learning.

GrabTaxi is touted to have 95 percent market share in the Southeast Asian third-party taxi-hailing market and more than 50 percent in the private car-sharing segment. It clocks 1.5 million bookings a day across Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, Vietnam, Thailand, and the Philippines.

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