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Sea and Grab: Southeast Asia shows the high cost of fast growth

Tim Culpan
Tim Culpan3/7/2022 05:10 PM GMT+08  • 3 min read
Sea and Grab: Southeast Asia shows the high cost of fast growth
As Grab and Sea announce larger losses for FY2021, should they show some fiscal discipline?
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With China’s technology giants facing a plethora of struggles, Southeast Asia was supposed to be the hip new market that offered a well of fast-growth companies. That’s coming at a heavy cost.

Earnings reports from e-commerce and gaming provider Sea as well as food and deliveries giant Grab Holdings are a stark reminder that years of break-neck speeds have been largely driven by subsidies and marketing. That wasn’t a problem when deep-pocketed venture capitalists like SoftBank Group Corp and Temasek Holdings were pumping money in during their startup phases.

But now they need to walk on their own. And they’re stumbling.

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