By Vansh Agarwal
(Reuters) -Grab Holdings Ltd bumped up its 2022 revenue forecast on Wednesday as demand booms for the Southeast Asian super-app’s rideshare and delivery services, sending its U.S.-listed shares up 15% before the bell.
The results capped a strong July-September period in which Grab’s adjusted operating loss also narrowed and its food and grocery delivery business broke even three quarters ahead of the company’s expectations.
Decade-old Grab, a household name in eight Southeast Asian countries, has been trying to stem losses by focusing on higher-paying customers and lowering spending on incentives.
In the third quarter, its ride-hailing revenue grew twofold because of a rebound in trips to the airport and office, while the delivery business more than tripled as consumers placed more orders despite runaway inflation.
The ride-hailing business is expected to have a robust holiday season and the delivery unit will remain “stable”, Chief Financial Officer Peter Oey told Reuters in an interview.
The company expects revenue between $1.32 billion and $1.35 billion for the full year, compared with $1.25 billion to $1.30 billion previously.
It also raised its annual forecast for gross merchandise volume growth (GMV), while lowering its expected adjusted operating loss for the second half as a slowdown in hiring and the closure of some sites in Singapore pay off.
Adjusted operating margin improved 209 basis points in the quarter, helping adjusted operating loss narrow to $161 million from $212 million a year earlier.
A strong dollar and growing odds of a global economic slowdown have prompted overseas peers such as Uber Inc to embark on a cost-cutting drive too.
“We know that we’re living in a time where cash is king and we’re watching our cash deployment very, very carefully,” Grab CFO Oey said.
(Reporting by Vansh Agarwal and Eva Mathews in Bengaluru; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila and Devika Syamnath)