From Dep’t Chief To CEO: Grab Exec Resigns To Lead Metaverse Gaming Company

The skills shortage from Web2 to Web3 continues with the disclosure of a senior executive leaving food-delivery Grab to join a blockchain gaming company.

According to a Bloomberg report on Wednesday, Wui Ngiap Foo — the head of technology at Asian ride-hailing app Grab — is quitting to lead a metaverse game company.

Foo was instrumental in developing the Grab platform’s mobility services fleet, as well as in the company’s 2018 acquisition of Uber’s Southeast Asia business and collaboration with Microsoft.

Grab’s exit comes as investor scrutiny of its growth prospects and high cash burn increases.

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Another Grab Exec To Quit

The management shift also comes on the heels of the revelation that Nguyen Thai Hai Van, Grab Vietnam’s managing director, would resign at the end of April.

Last month, two YouTube executives announced their resignation for Web3 ventures.

YouTube’s game director left to become CEO of Polygon Studios, while Jamie Byrne joined the NFT platform Bright Moments.

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Grabbing A Higher Post

Foo is expected to join crypto game firm Ethlas as CEO and co-founder next week, according to sources. Ethlas’ spokesperson declined to comment, while representatives from Grab did not respond to an emailed request for comment.

Since December’s public debut via a merger with a blank-check company, the company’s shares have lost more than 50% of their value, exacerbated by a steep market downturn and a poor earnings report.

Members of Grab’s executive committee signed an extension to the lockup period for their shares in the Singapore-based super app earlier this month, effectively prohibiting them from selling their interests.

At Ethlas, the 35-year old Foo is expected to deliver his years of experience at startups to boost growth.

A New Player Enters The Metaverse

Ethlas is one of a growing number of blockchain-based gaming companies that enable players to accumulate tradeable crypto currencies. On the site, gamers can access a variety of games, including Tetris, 2048, and Candy Crush.

Blockchain gaming is the fastest growing segment of the cryptoverse, accounting for the majority of active crypto wallets.

Axie Infinity, The Sandbox, and Decentraland have all seen a dramatic spike in popularity as a result of the growing interest in blockchain gaming.

For its part, the metaverse has grown in popularity and has been dubbed a trillion-dollar prospect by Grayscale, a subsidiary of CoinDesk’s owner Digital Currency Group.

Recently, the metaverse hosted a fashion week including 70 fashion brands, and even large banks such as HSBC and JPMorgan have joined.

Featured image from Edge Singapore, chart from