Didi Chuxing launches cheaper ride-hailing service

Didi V2X

China’s Didi Chuxing has said it has launched a new ride-hailing service that targets younger customers and offers cheaper rides compared to its main app.

KEY POINTS:

  • Didi Chuxing has launched a new standalone ride-hailing service in China
  • The standalone service is cheaper and aimed at younger customers

Didi, China’s biggest ride-hailing company and backed by Japan’s SoftBank, said in a statement the new service is named “Huaxiaozhu” and that it has already been launched in some cities in China’s southwestern province of Guizhou and the eastern province of Shandong.

The new service is not embedded in Didi’s existing platform. Huaxiaozhu has a separate app with a logo that looks like a money pot.

“Spending less money means saving more money,” Huaxiaozhu said in a post on its official Weibo account announcing the launch.

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Rides booked via Huaxiaozhu start from as low as 5.5 yuan (approximately $0.79) and users can earn discount vouchers for rides by participating in activities offered by the smartphone app, such as recommending the service to friends.

The launch of Huaxiaozhu follows Didi’s roll-out of new delivery and logistics services this year in an expansion of its operations in China. It also comes after Didi Chuxing Chief Executive Officer Cheng Wei said back in April of this year that the company aimed to complete 100 million orders a day and have grown to some 800 million monthly active users around the world by 2022.

Didi said yesterday that an IPO was not an immediate top priority for the company and that it did not have any plan for one after Chinese media reported it was preparing to float its shares on the Hong Kong exchange.

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Via our content partners at Thomson Reuters. Reporting by Yilei Sun and Yingzhi Yang in Beijing, and Brenda Goh in Shanghai. Editing by Louise Heavens and Tom Hogue.

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