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Grab: Ride-hailing market in provinces to be industry driver

TRANSPORT network company Grab Philippines said areas outside greater Metro Manila present one of the biggest opportunities for the ride-hailing industry.

Grab Senior Director for Operations Ronald G. Roda said during a media roundtable meeting on Friday that areas outside the nation’s capital need additional transport network vehicle services (TNVS).

“The fresh allocation of TNVS is truly a welcome development,” he said. “Historically, Grab noted strong contributions to the local economies of the cities where it operates, as it creates a domino effect on growth — from driver-partners, merchant-partners and down to the consumers.”

At present, the company’s ride-hailing services are available only in eight to nine cities and municipalities, while its food delivery services are available in 45.

“Lipa City and other Batangas cities have super strong GrabFood and GrabExpress presence but no GrabCars nor motorcycle taxis,” said Mr. Roda. 

“We have asked the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) to open [TNVS] in new cities,” he added.

Grab is aiming for the opening of TNVS slots in Iligan City, Cagayan de Oro City and Davao City, which it previously requested from LTFRB.

“Davao has already issued a city resolution asking for TNVS, while Cagayan de Oro and Iligan are currently in the process of issuing,” said Mr. Roda.

The company is also asking for additional TNVS slots in the cities of Cebu, Iloilo and Bacolod, as well as in the provinces of Pampanga, Albay and Camarines Sur to meet the growing demand for ride-hailing in the said areas.

In Grab’s estimate, up to 35,000 TNVS licenses should be supplied in provinces based on the total addressable market and activity levels of the current driver pool in December 2022.

Meanwhile, Grab said it is planning to expand the serviced locations of its delivery platform, GrabFood, to 60 this year, from the previous 45.

“We are already expanding. We will expand to an additional 15 cities and municipalities this year, “ Mr. Roda said.

Most of these openings will be in the Visayas and Mindanao, according to Mr. Roda, as the GrabFood service “is fairly everywhere” in Luzon. — Justine Irish D. Tabile

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