Partnerships / Acquisitions

Didi Chuxing Spinoff Buys Hiservice

Didi Chuxing spinout Xiaoju Automobile Solutions (XAS) announced on Tuesday (Aug. 14) that it has acquired Hiservice, a company that provides after-service care for car owners.

According to the report, Hiservice will combine with XAS’ maintenance and repair unit to form a new unit that will focus on servicing car owners by providing maintenance, parts and components. The business will be called Xiaoju Auto Care. The report noted the unit will be jointly run by Yinbo Yi, who heads up Didi’s auto care business, and Hiservice Founder Cheng Qian. The new business says it has 28 physical maintenance centers across seven cities in Asia.

The news comes as Didi is in deal-making mode. Earlier this month, a report surfaced that Didi and Alibaba’s Ant Financial are negotiating a deal for a joint buyout of bike-sharing startup Ofo for $2 billion. The ridesharing firm and the Chinese eCommerce powerhouse are poised to make the most recent deal in a wave of consolidations in the Chinese bike-sharing market, as thousands of bikes have littered major cities in recent years amid a large number of startups. The negotiations come months after Ofo rival Mobike was acquired for $2.7 billion by Meituan-Dianping, an on-demand service provider linked to Tencent, which backs Mobike.

Didi, which already owns a stake in Mobike, has hired an outside firm to do due diligence on Ofo, the report said. The source noted that the offer price could be lowered or even withdrawn if Ofo’s financials are less than what they originally presented. The joint bid was originally reported by local Chinese media.

SoftBank Group, a leading robotics and technology firm based in Japan, is a shareholder in both Alibaba and Didi, and was a partner with Ofo in that company’s expansion into Japan in 2017. Ofo, based in Beijing, says that it runs more than 10 million bikes in more than 20 countries. However, according to local media reports, the company has either scaled back or shut down operations in two key markets, India and Australia.

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