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Finance

Didi Chuxing completes $4bn equity funding round

Fresh capital aimed at artificial intelligence, green cars, overseas operations

A staff member walks at Didi Chuxing's booth at the Global Mobile Internet Conference (GMIC) 2017 in Beijing.   © Reuters

BEIJING -- Chinese ride-hailing leader Didi Chuxing said Thursday it has raised $4 billion in fresh capital from an undisclosed source.

A fund set up by Japanese information technology conglomerate SoftBank Group and one based in the Middle East are believed to be among those who provided the cash.

Didi said it plans to use the funds to accelerate the development of artificial intelligence in areas such as big data analysis, to expand its overseas operations and to build a transportation network with "new energy vehicles," as electric vehicles and plug-in hybrids are called in China.

Since its inception in 2012, Didi has become China's top ride-hailing service by merging with a major domestic rival and buying the Chinese operations of U.S. ride-hailing app operator Uber Technologies.

Didi has over 450 million users in its home market and 21 million registered drivers. Each day it offers 25 million rides to customers, according to the company.

It has also teamed up with overseas competitors, including Lyft in the U.S., Grab in Singapore, Ola in India, Taxify in Estonia and Careem in the United Arab Emirates. It now operates in 1,000 cities around the world and reaches over 60% of the world's population, the company says.

In April, Didi raised $5.5 billion from SoftBank and others.

(Nikkei)

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