Chinese ride-hailing startup Didi Chuxing acquires Uber’s Brazilian rival 99 in a deal worth $600 million. Didi’s focus had always been on its home market, however after beating Uber at its own game in China; Didi Chuxing is all set to become an international player.
The company has freshly raised $4 billion last month to boost its global expansion.
“Globalization is a top strategic priority for Didi,” said CEO Cheng Wei.
Didi had been interested in the Brazilian startup for quite some time. A year ago, Didi was the lead investor in a $100 million funding round for 99. Didi has since then sent teams of engineers to Sao Paulo, in order to improve 99’s technology.
CEO 99 Peter Fernandez thinks that the deal might help his company to expand. He says that working under Didi “will vastly enhance our capability to expand our services throughout Brazil.”
After retreating from China, Uber has diverted its attention and resources towards Latin America and Didi has followed it there too. Didi after acquiring Uber’s biggest rival in Brazil is now headed towards Uber’s busiest market Mexico. Last month, Reuters reported that Didi plans to expand into Mexico, however, no yet comments have been released by Didi itself.
Extending its rivalry, Didi has made its way to several other markets that are important to Uber. It has partnered with 7 international ride-hailing companies, including Ola in India, Grab in Southeast Asia and Taxify that has its presence in Europe, Africa and other regions.
Both Uber and Didi have been fighting head to head in China before Uber sold its operations in the country to Didi in 2016.
Now Uber holds the largest stake in Didi, while in return, Didi holds a minority stake in Uber.
Japanese tech firm Softbank is also one of the biggest investors in Didi. Last week, Softbank reached a deal to buy 15 percent stake in Uber too.