WED, DEC 01, 2021 – 8:06 AM OLIVIA POH

SHAREHOLDERS voted in favour of the merger between Grab and listed shell company Altimeter Growth Corp, paving the way for the ride-hailing and delivery giant to list in the US on Thursday (Dec 2).

Shares of Altimeter Growth Corporation fell 5.8 per cent to close at US$12.72 on Tuesday (Nov 30), after the proposal passed at an extraordinary general meeting. It rebounded slightly in post-market trading.

The green light from investors marks the completion of one of the biggest blank-cheque deals globally, which valued the combination at nearly US$40 billion. The combined entity will start trading on the Nasdaq on Dec 2 under the ticker GRAB.

Investors that back a SPAC (special purpose acquisition company) have a chance to redeem their bets at the issue price before the merger is completed. In Grab’s case, 0.02 per cent of shares were redeemed, Altimeter said in a statement. Grab’s redemption rate could be considered low compared to its US peers, where interest in SPAC deals have sizzled out of late.

As a result of the transaction, Grab will receive a US$4.5 billion cash injection, which includes US$4 billion in private investment in public equity arrangement, from the SPAC promoted by Silicon Valley investor Brad Gerstner.

Gerstner’s Altimeter Growth and Grab announced the deal in April, near the height of the SPAC boom. It then delayed the completion of the merger to Q4 as it finalised its audit of the past 3 years.

Grab reported widening losses of US$988 million for its third quarter, from US$621 million a year before. Revenue fell 9 per cent to US$157 million, weighed down by pandemic restrictions. In mid-November, Grab’s app was hit by a widespread outage which dragged on for more than 2 days after its system upgrade backfired.