Toyota Financial Collaborates With Ride-Hail Service Grab

Toyota Financial Services — along with Toyota Motor Corp. and Aioi Nissay Dowa Insurance Co. — are forming a collaboration with Southeast Asia ride-hailing giant, Grab, the companies announced today.

The collaboration involves the Connected Company, a Toyota Motor in-house company, that has developed a data-transmission device that captures driving patterns and deliver telematics services like the vehicle position management system to fleet customers. The device, TransLog, will be installed into an initial 100 Grab rental cars in a pilot test.

Toyota will analyze driving patterns captured by the recording devices, and consider steps to deliver connected services including user-based insurance, financing programs, and predictive maintenance that make up the Toyota Mobility Service Platform, the companies said in a statement.

No specific plans have been made at present in regards to the role each company will play within the partnership as the precise details of the partnership are still being finalized, Vincent Bray, a Toyota Financial Services spokesman, told Auto Finance News.

“We believe ride-hailing services have huge potential in terms of shaping the future of mobility and, through this agreement with Grab, we would like to explore new ways of delivering secure, convenient, and attractive mobility services to customers,” he said. “Toyota and Grab will discuss collaboration, starting with trials, in Southeast Asia countries where ride-hailing services are expanding, taking various factors into account — such as regulations, business conditions, and customer needs.”

Grab is the largest Southeast Asia ride-hailing platform, with a marketshare of 95% in third-party taxi-hailing and 72% in private-vehicle hailing, the company said. Grab provides 3 million daily rides. Grab also operates GrabPay, a mobile wallet where credit and debit cards can be used to load money into the wallet; it also supports online banks, local ATMs, and local wallets. In emerging markets, where Grab is centered, millions of people are unbanked and there are limited go-to digital options, meaning that Grab has positioned itself as a viable option for everyday purchases beyond just transportation.

In a separate announcement, not related to the partnership, Toyota Tsusho — the OEM’s trading arm — made an undisclosed investment in Grab’s Series G round which is targeted at $2.5 billion.

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