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Asian Tech Giant Grab Acquires Robo-advisory Startup Bento Invest

Jordan Major

Grab, a Southeast Asian tech company has acquired a Singapore-based Robo-advisory startup, Bento Invest, Tech in Asia reports. Through that acquisition, Grab can now create retail wealth management and investment solutions to driver-partners, users, and merchant-partners across the region.

The financial details of this deal were not revealed. Bento will be rebranded as GrabInvest as part of that deal. It will become the new core business operating under Grab Financial Group, Grab’s financial services arm.

Grab Financial’s current brands include GrabFinance, GrabPay, GrabInsure, and GrabRewards. Official reports reveal that GrabInvest will launch products on the Grab app targeting Singapore as its first market within the first half of 2020.

Operations

GrabInvest will operate under the Monetary Authority of Singapore’s Retail Licensed Fund Management Company license. Reuben Lai, Grab Financial senior managing director, said:

“As we face an increasingly volatile and uncertain economic environment, it is imperative for Southeast Asians to acquire the tools and knowledge to protect their future by sustainably building wealth for themselves and their families.”

This launch will democratize access to affordable financial solutions that will enable the users to gain financial stability for years to come. Bento was founded in 2016, and it provides a platform built for wealth managers, banks, and brokers. It urges clients to invest regularly.

Its proprietary digital wealth platform features client onboarding and portfolio construction and rebalancing. Robust risk management capabilities also support the platform. GrabInvest’s launch comes in the wake of several other developments that have created a productive start of 2020 for the company with regards to expansion.                

Grab partnered with Singtel to apply for a digital full bank license in Singapore. This digital bank will cater to many of the financial needs of consumers seeking convenient and personalized financial services. It will also cater to the needs of small and medium-sized enterprises that encounter a lack of access to credit.

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