While many businesses are still busy developing e-hailing and delivery apps, Grab, Now and Zalo have triggered a new battle among super-apps.
On September 11, Grab announced strategic cooperation with Moca to boost non-cash online payment activities in Vietnam. And just one month later, Grab launched GrabFood service in Hanoi.
“We strive to become a super app in Southeast Asia,” said Tan Hooi Ling, a co-founder of Grab at the September 11 event.
Super app is understood as a ‘powerful app’ with many integrated functions. Customers can order goods and services with a single super-app instead of using different apps to order different services.
An analyst commented that app developers are trying to follow WeChat, a very successful app with the network of over 900 million users.
In Vietnam, people would use Grab and Go-Viet if they want transport service and use Now if they want to book food. And they use Shopee and Lazada to do shopping and think of Traveloka if they want to travel.
Grab, Now, Zalo and Go-Viet are the big players.
The biggest advantage of the first three players is the large custom. After five years of operation, Zalo has 100 million users. Grab said two out of every 10 Vietnamese use its service. As for Now, it doesn’t provide exact figures, but has customers from Foody ecosystem.
The State Bank of Vietnam (SBV) has announced it will tighten licensing to institutions to provide intermediary payment service, the elementary factor for a super app.
Meanwhile, Zalo has ZaloPay, while Now is cooperating with AirPay, and Grab has joined hands with Moca.
Grab is the player which has made the strongest commitments about becoming a super app.
Nguyen Tuan Anh, CEO of Grab Financial Group Vietnam, stated at a recent event that users can go to offices with GrabCar, avoid traffic jams with GrabBike, send gifts with GrabExpress, and order food with GrabFood.
Zalo and Now show that they have quietly joined the super-app battle by integrating new functions into their existing apps.
HCMC dwellers now can find information about traffic flow, roadblocks, accidents, traffic congestion and current traffic via live images captured by 700 traffic cameras thanks to the HCM City Traffic Portal with the Zalo app.
Go-Viet seems to have no advantage in the war. However, analysts believe it will ‘march forward very quickly’. Go-Viet’s co-founder Nguyen Vu Duc affirmed that besides GoBike, Go-Viet will launch more key products in the ecosystem, including Go-Car, Go-Food and Go-Pay.