Yamaha Motor Co. Ltd (Yamaha) and Grab Holding, Inc. (Grab) have announced that they have entered into a strategic partnership agreement. Yamaha and Grab will work together to further develop motorcycle ride-hailing services within Southeast Asia with a focus on Indonesia. Yamaha will also invest $150 million USD in Grab.

What’s the deal?

The partnership will help develop next-generation mobility services. The agreement calls for Grab to leverage Yamaha’s technology and know-how in motorcycle safety. Then use the results to enable safe and confident riding by Grab’s biker partners and increase customer satisfaction. In addition, Yamaha will work to reduce motorcycle purchasing barriers for Grab’s current motorcycle ride-hailing drivers (or those considering becoming drivers).

Grab will allow Yamaha to leverage its customer base in Southeast Asia as well as share its knowledge of the motorcycle ride-hailing business for future product development.

Motorcycle Ride Hailing Service

Grab provides motorcycle based ride-hailing services through its app. Photo credit: Grab

Grab’s services

Grab has been very successful in Southeast Asia with its app being downloaded onto over 125 million devices. 8 million drivers have completed over 2.5 billion rides since 2012. In addition to its on-demand transportation services, Grab offers food and package delivery in 235 cities in 8 countries.

Grab moto driver and passenger

A Grab moto driver and passenger.  Photo credit: BAY ISMOYO/AFP/Getty Images)

Executives from both companies expressed their thoughts about the partnership. Takuya Kinoshita, Chief General Manager of Motorcycle Business Operations, Yamaha said:

“We anticipate significant advancements through this collaboration with Grab via strategic partnership. As well as increasing user and driver safety and confidence through incorporation of Yamaha Motor technology in new user-participation type transport systems, we also anticipate further increases in the value of motorcycles in future mobility systems, and the creation of new mobility solutions.”

Grab President, Grab Ming Maa voiced his thoughts on the agreement saying:

“We are thrilled to partner with Yamaha to develop and provide industry-leading safety mobility services to our motorcycle driver-partners in Indonesia. The safety of our driver-partners and passengers is of paramount importance to us and we will continue to work with our partners to roll out innovative solutions and initiatives that make Grab the safest and most reliable ride-hailing platform in Southeast Asia.”

At first blush, this partnership looks like it could be a win-win for both parties. Grab will benefit from Yamaha’s moto knowledge and will also receive a $150 million USD cash infusion from Yamaha. On the flip side of the coin, Yamaha will be able to leverage Grab’s large customer/driver base to get a head start on the sales of new bikes to drivers and learn what’s important to them.

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