RIDE-HAILING company Grab Philippines announced on Thursday the appointment of a new country head, Grace Vera Cruz.

Ms. Vera Cruz, a former managing director at investment firm Seawood Resources, Inc., is expected to bring her “deep expertise and understanding to help drivers and small businesses use digital services to grow and support the Philippines in its economic recovery,” Russell Cohen, group managing director for Grab, said in a statement.

Grab said Ms. Vera Cruz, who has also held key positions in McKinsey & Co., CLSA Exchange Capital, and Shell, “will focus on creating deeper synergies across Grab’s suite of services, including on-demand transport, food and mart deliveries, and e-payments and financial services, to better serve customers, driver-partners, merchant-partners, and corporate partners in the Philippines as One Grab.”

“She will also drive ‘Grab for Good’ initiatives to contribute to the Philippines’ longer-term socio-economic development,” Grab added.

Grab Philippines used to be headed by Brian P. Cu who resigned in July. Ronald Roda, Grab Philippines’ head of transport and shared services, continued leading the operations.

Grab currently serves 18 cities in the country. Its operations include ride-hailing and on-demand food-delivery app, as well as groceries and package delivery, concierge services, bill payments, and financial services.

“I look forward to working with the team to leverage Grab’s technology and innovation to help Filipino communities safely and sustainably recover from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic,” Ms. Vera Cruz said. — Arjay L. Balinbin