Grab Philippines’ acquisition of MOVE IT challenged by 4 groups

FOUR GROUPS are asking the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) to review Grab Philippines’ acquisition of motorcycle taxi firm MOVE IT.

Lawyers for Commuters Safety and Protection, National Public Transport Coalition, ARANGKADA Riders Alliance, and Digital Pinoys signed a petition on Thursday calling on the LTFRB to review the transaction.

Ariel E. Inton, founder of Lawyers for Commuters Safety and Protection, said Grab’s acquisition of MOVE IT should not grant it “instant accreditation” to be part of the pilot test of motorcycle taxi services.

“It should not mean that when an … accredited company withdraws or shows that it is no longer interested in operating a motorcycle taxi service, very much like the planned sale of MOVE IT to Grab, the accreditation is automatically transferred,” Mr. Inton said.

Grab Philippines has said it aims to expand MOVE IT’s existing motorcycle taxi fleet and improve the efficiency of its platform to service more commuters and onboard at least 6,000 driver-partners within three months.

Grab’s MOVE IT said in a separate statement that it “remains as one of the three motorcycle (MC) operators, and its accreditation remains its own and does not transfer to Grab.”

“Regardless of its ownership, MOVE IT maintains its own corporate identity and branding under the leadership of its Chairman Mr. Francis Juan. Given the transition of government, we prudently and proactively informed all relevant government agencies — based on our rigorous legal due diligence,” it added.

The company also said the allegations are “an attempt to keep MOVE IT so small that it would not pose any competition to the two other operators.” — Arjay L. Balinbin