China’s Didi Chuxing looks to go beyond ride sharing

Didi Chuxing, China’s version of Uber and the country’s largest ride sharing company has announced today that is has raised $4 billion in new capital from investors. Investors that include Alibaba, Apple, and Tencent have already help raised $13 billion, but Didi plans to invest the newest funds into several initiatives including artificial intelligence and electric vehicles, but they also have plans that include international expansion.

The names of the investors in this latest fundraising round were not undisclosed, but Didi did say that investors were from both Chinese and international institutions. Recently, Didi has invested heavily in AI for its ride sharing service. Self driving car is something Didi will be looking into as China this month has allowed autonomous cars to begin roaming the streets.

Didi is looking to build up its own charging network for EVs in China. The United Nations and the Global Energy Interconnection Development and Cooperation Organization (GEIDCO) will partner with Didi to help build up that charging network. Didi also claims operate the world’s largest fleet of electric cars with more than 260,000 vehicles under its platform. This is out of the two million estimated EVs currently running on Chinese roads. The fleet of electric cars includes minibuses, taxis, and rental cars. Their ride share app has roughly 450 million users and 21 million drivers.  Didi intends to increase the EV count to one million by 2020.

Didi is also looking to expand its presence beyond China as it sets its eyes globally. As of now it remains a China-only business, but with investments from an international spectrum. Details have been vague on how they will a expand internationally and compete with Uber.

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