Mumbai: Ola, run by ANI Technologies Ltd, and Uber Technologies Inc. have once again revived talks to merge their businesses in India, in a deal being brokered by common investor SoftBank Group Corp.

A person aware of the matter confirmed that senior executives from Ola and Uber have met several times over the past several months.

The talks indicate that home-grown Ola will take over Uber India. However, the blueprint of the deal is yet to be worked out and could take several months, said this person. Softbank is the largest investor in both the companies, and is facilitating these talks, he added.

When asked about the development, an Ola spokesperson said, “Ola is always actively looking for opportunities to expand its footprint. SoftBank and all other investors are committed to realising this ambition."

It can be noted that talks about an Ola-Uber merger have heightened a day after Uber announced its exit from Southeast Asia, after selling its local unit to rival company Grab.

Meanwhile, Uber chief executive Dara Khosrowshahi said earlier in the day that the deal with Grab would help the US- based cab aggregator increase its investment in its core markets like India and ramp up products as well as grow new businesses like Uber Eats. India is already among the top three markets for Uber after the US and Latin America. “We will be more focused on organic growth in the markets we are operating in," he added. PTI DSK BEN BEN RYS

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