Didi Chuxing, the Chinese ride-hailing app that counts Apple, Abu Dhabi's Mubadala Investment Company and Japan's Softbank among its shareholders, has raised US$4 billion in new financing to boost its AI capabilities and fund further worldwide expansion.
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. Tech giant SoftBank is close to buying a 13.4% stake in Uber at a steep discount - the investment would value Uber at about 20% less than the $68 billion that investors thought it was worth in its most recent funding round previous year.
The ride-hailing company has already raised more than $13bn, with stakeholders including ecommerce rivals Alibaba and Tencent and United States tech giant Apple.
The investment would extend Didi's valuation to $56bn.
The identities of the investors were not disclosed, though Didi did note in a statement that "in a testament to strong investor confidence in the strategic vision".More news: North Korea reportedly testing biological weapon for anthrax missile deployment
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Uber and Didi compete in each region of the world, including the Middle East, after the Chinese company signed a partnership with UAE-based ride-sharing firm Careem in August.
It said both Chinese and worldwide institutions joined the fundraising round.
According to Didi the fundraising attracted both Chinese and global investors.
Sources, reported by the Wall Street Journal, said that Softbank - the Japanese telecoms and ecommerce group, and an existing investor - was among the latest investors, as well as the Abu Dhabi sovereign wealth fund Mubadala Capital.