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China’s Didi, competitor to Uber, looks to expand into Taiwan market

China’s Didi Chuxing on Tuesday stated it was seeking to bring its ride-hailing service to Taiwan through a regional franchise partner, possibly marking its first growth throughout waters as it seeks to take on U.S. competing Uber Technologies Inc.

Didi Chuxing stated it has authorized franchisee operator LEDI Technology to carry out market research and explore community partnerships in Taiwan.

“Together we wish to bring hassle-free, effective and budget-friendly ride services to the regional community and produce more income opportunities. There is no conclusive timeline at this moment,” Didi stated.

Didi’s investors consist of Apple Inc, SoftBank Group and Alibaba Group. It was valued at more than $50 billion previously this year, making it the 2nd most-valuable venture-backed private company behind Uber.

Taiwan is going to be Didi’s first spot outside the Chinese mainland and Hong Kong. However it has invested in Uber rivals worldwide, such as U.S.-based Lyft, Brazil’s 99, India’s Ola, Singapore’s Grab, Estonia’s Taxify and the Middle East’s Careem.

Reuters previously this month reported that Didi planned to break into Mexico in 2018.

Legal scrutiny and regional opposition from drivers have given ride-hailing companies a bumpy ride in markets throughout Asia. Uber in February stopped operations in Taiwan after high fines enforced by the government, prior to revealing a resumption in April.

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