• Grab is a global “super app,” with services ranging from food deliveries to financial services.
  • It’s now valued at nearly $40 billion in what is expected to be the biggest SPAC deal in history.
  • The 9-year-old company launched as a ride-hailing service with just $10,000 from a business school competition.

About 15 years ago, Grab cofounder Hooi Ling Tan was afraid to hail a taxi in her hometown of Kuala Lumpur.

Then a junior business analyst for the management consulting firm McKinsey, Tan described feeling like her options to get home after working late nights were limited. The Malaysian capital city was notorious for having one of the worst taxi systems in the world. She also didn’t feel safe driving herself home because she feared she would fall asleep at the wheel after a long day.

As an alternative, she created a manual GPS tracking system with her mom.

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