Alibaba Bets Another $2 Billion on Southeast Asia

That’s the headline of a story I wrote with my colleague Liza Liz, which ran on Monday. It begins: Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. Executive Chairman Jack Ma is doubling down on Southeast Asia, investing another $2 billion in e-commerce subsidiary Lazada Group and naming trusted confidante Lucy Peng as its chief executive. The investment announced […]

Uber Agrees in Principle to Exit Southeast Asia for Stake in Rival

That’s the headline of my newest story, which I wrote with my colleagues Greg Bensinger and Julie Steinberg. It ran late Thursday, and begins: Uber Technologies Inc. has reached an agreement in principle to sell most of its Southeast Asia operations to local rival Grab Inc., ending a costly fight for market share in the […]

By Me Today: Uber Hits Roadblocks in Southeast Asia

The story begins: SINGAPORE—When Uber Technologies Inc. retreated from China last year after conceding a costly battle with a local rival, the ride-hailing giant vowed to devote new resources to winning other lucrative markets in Asia. Since then, Uber has suffered setbacks in Southeast Asia, a region of 600 million people, where it has been […]

My Top 10 Southeast Asia Travel Tips

tl;dr: Don’t rush For longer trips, use Bangkok as a Base Next, Look Beyond Thailand to Cambodia, Laos, and Especially Vietnam More Destinations: Myanmar and Borneo Eat Liberally Disconnect If You Must, SIM Cards are Wi-Fi Widely Available Don’t Overpack, But Bring the Right Stuff Ask Friends of Friends for Advice Do Your Own Research […]

Recent Stories: Grab <--> Lyft; Microsoft Exec on Self-Driving Cars; Venture Capital in Southeast Asia

I’m behind in sharing some of the stories I’ve been working on. Here are a few from last week. The first, on Grab’s integration with Lyft in the U.S., begins: The latest step in a global ride-sharing alliance between rivals of Uber Technologies Inc. went into effect Thursday, allowing users of a popular Southeast Asia-focused […]

Book Notes — ‘Asian Godfathers,’ by Joe Studwell

Note: I have long kept, on index cards, written notes about the books I read. I decided to share some of these thoughts here, and will be posting them, one by one on individual books, in no particular order. I’ll group them all together on a central page later. Thanks to Derek Sivers for the […]

By Me Last Week: GrabTaxi Is Becoming Grab

The story begins: Uber Technologies Inc.’s main rival in Southeast Asia wants people to know that it—like the San Francisco, Calif. startup—offers not just taxis, but private cars. Singapore-based GrabTaxi Holdings Pte. Ltd. said Thursday it is shortening its name to simply Grab. The goal: to highlight that in addition to allowing users to book […]

Notable Addition to the Southeast Asia Starbucks Misspellings Collection: ‘Newrick’

A new one for my collection: “Newrick.” I love it. 🙂

President Obama, ‘If You Were a Rohingya…”

A Thai attendee at a recent Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative event at the White House asked President Obama the following question: “If you were a Rohinya, which country would you prefer to live in, and why?” Now, the question drew snickers, because it’s a bit odd to ask the world’s most powerful man what […]

Arsenal Players + Durian = Funny

English Premier League sides Arsenal, Everton and Stoke are coming here to Singapore in July for some pre-season exhibition matches. Ahead of the trip, Arsenal players were asked to try the notoriously stinky durian fruit, native to Southeast Asia. Love their reactions. The video is embedded above and on YouTube here.