Didi Kuaidi Rules the Roost in China, to Give Away Free Rides Worth 1 Billion Yuan

Drawing greater energy from their synergistic union in February, Didi Kuaidi, are on an aggressive expansion spree!

In the latest news from the company, starting May 25, commuters in 12 Chinese cities will enjoy free rides from Didi Kuaidi’s new chauffeur service every Monday for a month. This will amount to about 1 billion yuan ($161 million) of free rides by the company.

Didi Kuaidi is the world's largest smartphone-based transport service, with as much as 78 percent market share in China. It operates in 360 cities in China and has 1.35 million drivers. Its premium car service is in 61 cities with 400,000 drivers. Daily calls for taxis have hit 4 million per day, while premium cars are ordered 1.5 million times a day.

Didi Kuaidi was formed by a merger in February and is presently valued at approximately $6 billion. It is backed by Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. and Tencent Holdings Ltd, with them owing 10 percent and 13 percent stake in the company, respectively.

With its intended foray into the ride-sharing and carpooling segments, it aims to become the undisputed leader in the market. According to its current plans, the users of the Didi Kuaidi app will now have access to premium cars, carpooling, designated drivers and a service for passengers with special needs, alongside the usual cab calling function.

According to Cheng Wei, chief executive officer of Didi Kuaidi, “Three years from now, our goal is to allow everyone to hail a taxi or get a ride within three minutes and to serve 30 million people per day”. With this, it intends to become the largest ‘one-stop transportation platform’ in the world.

Didi Kuaidi’s current giveaway is sure going to unsettle rivals Uber Technologies Inc, the $40 billion US start-up backed by Chinese search leader Baidu Inc and local firm Yidao Yongche.

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