US-based in-car goods and services provider for ride-hailing companies Cargo today announced its debut in Asia with the launch of Grab&Go in Singapore, the result of its partnership with Southeast Asian ride-hailing giant Grab.
The partnership will enable Grab drivers to earn extra income by providing goods such as snacks, beverages, or even beauty products in their car for their passengers. Drivers can expect to earn additional S$75-250 (US$56-186) through the partnership; it is also expected to help improve their ratings.
It will also serve as an alternative channel for brands to reach out to their customers; Grab&Go has partnered with brands such as Kellogg’s, Biore UV, Novu and Unilever’s Lux Luminique to distribute complimentary products to passengers.
The Grab&Go service is being launched with 1,000 driver-partners with the goal to reach Grab’s two million plus driver-partners in the region.
Following Singapore, Grab&Go will also be launched in other Southeast Asian markets, which are yet to be disclosed.
In an email to e27, Cargo Founder Jeff Cripe explained why the company chose to begin its international expansion in Singapore.
“It was less about choosing Singapore and more about choosing Grab––who is headquartered in Singapore––to be our partner,” he wrote.
“After announcing our US launch last June, most of the top global ride-share companies inquired about working with us. In Grab we found a partner that both shared our vision for the role of in-car commerce in the future of the ride-share economy and embraced working with a startup that had to deploy its resources efficiently, which is how we developed Cargo’s co-branded licensing model, a major (and leaner) departure from how Cargo operates in the US,” he continued.
Grab rival Go-Jek has recently announced that it is preparing its entry to Singapore. However, Cripe declined to comment when asked about the possibility of working with other ride-hailing startups –or whether the deal with Grab is exclusive in nature.
“Our policy is not to comment on specific deal terms, but Cargo’s mission is to be the premier, global provider of in-car goods and services to the ride-share economy, and eventually to autonomous vehicle fleets. To achieve that, it is absolutely necessary to partner with regional ride-share leaders like Grab who share our vision for the future of in-car goods and services,” he said.
To use the service, passengers need to visit Grab&Go’s digital menu on their smartphone. They will have to select the products that they like to purchase, enter a five-digit code to ensure the payment goes to the right driver, and the additional cost will eventually be added to the final Grab fare.
In the US, Cargo already has operations in cities such as New York; Boston; Chicago; Minneapolis; Washington, D.C.; Baltimore; Atlanta and Dallas.
To date, it has raised a total of US$8.5 million to support its expansion in the US and to international markets.
According to a TechCrunch report, the company’s latest funding round came from CRCM Ventures and Kellogg’s venture capital fund eighteen94 capital.
Image Credit: Grab&Go