Microsoft Joining Asian Ride-Hailing Industry

Microsoft is getting in on the ride-hailing industry via a partnership with Southeast Asian company Grab.

According to Reuters.com, the five-year agreement allows both companies to collaborate on technology projects like artificial intelligence, but the financial details of the deal were not released to the public.

Earlier this year, the Singapore-headquartered Grab announced plans to raise roughly $3 billion by year-end to continue expanding its business, which already includes operations in 235 cities across eight countries in Southeast Asia.

Grab has already raised $2 billion, and company executives said the remainder of the money will come from strategic and financial firms. The ride-hailing firm has already worked with other companies, such as SoftBank Group Corp, Toyota Motor Corp and Vulcan Capital.

The partnership will call on Grab and Microsoft to develop facial recognition, image recognition and computer vision technologies to improve the pick-up experience. Grab will also use Microsoft’s Azure as its preferred cloud platform for data analytics and fraud detection.

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