Friday January 13, 2017 11:04
Didi Chuxing Invests In Brazilian Uber Rival, Reignites Ridesharing WarPosted by Aida Alvarenga
On Wednesday, Didi announced it has made a “strategic investment” in 99 (formerly 99Taxis), an Uber competitor in Brazil and self-proclaimed market leader in Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro.
Last summer, Uber and Didi Chuxing struck a truce, with Uber selling its ridesharing business to Didi in exchange for about a 20% stake in the combined company. That peace deal didn’t last long.
On Wednesday, Didi announced it has made a "strategic investment" in 99 (formerly 99Taxis), an Uber competitor in Brazil and self-proclaimed market leader in Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro. Didi will provide guidance and support for 99, including in "technology, product development, operations and business planning." Didi said specifically that it will share "data-driven algorithmic capabilities" too.
“99 is incredibly excited to partner with Didi, the world’s largest and best ride-sharing platform. We welcome Didi to Latin America," Peter Fernandez, CEO of 99, said in a statement. "Didi’s financing, state-of-art technology and operations knowledge will play a key supporting role as 99 actively expands our network and services in Brazil and reshapes the competitive landscape in Latin America.”
A source close to the deal has confirmed to FORBES a Brazilian report that the total funding round is over $100 million, with Didi as the lead investor.
"Partnering with 99, the local market leader, Didi will begin sharing capabilities and products with more diverse communities and innovators, to build a collaborative framework for innovation as envisioned by our leaders at the 2016 G20 Summit," Didi founder and CEO Cheng Wei said in a statement. "We look forward to working with more global partners in creating better mobility services and more work opportunities for our cities, as we reshape together the future global transportation system.”
99 claims to be the market leader vs. Uber in Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, with 140,000 registered drivers in Brazil and over 10 million app downloads. A spokesperson for Uber declined to comment on the deal.
99’s previous investors include Tiger Global, which has put money into both Didi and Uber, along with other ridesharing firms. It launched in 2012 as a taxi-hailing platform but has added black car and peer-to-peer services since then. Uber has not only faced competitors like 99, but also fierce protests in Brazil and other South American countries over the last couple of years.
Author: Brian Solomon, Forbes
Source: Forbes, http://www.forbes.com/sites/briansolomon/2017/01/04/didi-chuxing-invests-in-brazilian-uber-rival-reignites-ridesharing-war/#7cf05b0477eb