China’s Didi cites technical expenses ahead of Wall St.

Chinese ride-hailing service Didi says it has lost $5.5 billion over the past three years, but ahead of its US stock market debut on Wednesday it will expand its global reach and investments in the development of electric and self-driving cars. is exposing.

The Beijing-headquartered company operates in 16 countries, but of the 493 million customers who have used the service at least once in the past year, nearly 90% are in China.

Didi Global Inc. plans to raise up to $4 billion by selling 288 million shares on the New York Stock Exchange at $13-$14 each. It said 30% would be spent on technology development, another 30% to expand outside China and 20% on new products.

“We aspire to be a truly global technology company,” Cheng and President Jin Qing Liu said in the prospectus. Liu is the daughter of Liu Chuanzhi, former managing director of Goldman Sachs and founder of computer maker Lenovo Group.

Early investors included Apple Inc., Japan’s SoftBank, Alibaba and Chinese Internet giants, Tencent Holding Ltd., and Baidu Inc.

Didi acquired rival Quadi in 2016 and Uber Technologies Inc.’s China operation the following year, ending a fight in which the US company said it was losing $1 billion a year.

China’s populous ride-hailing market has undergone a sudden change as the ruling Communist Party tries to nurture technology developments while taking control of promising industries.

Founded as a smartphone-based taxi-hailing service, it began ride-hailing in 2014 and expanded overseas in 2018 by acquiring 99 Taxis from Brazil and establishing operations in Mexico.

In 2015-16, regulators tightened state media controls in an effort to prevent traffic congestion and crime involving ride-hailing services. Drivers were required to be residents of the cities and towns where they worked and to be monitored more closely.

Didi has invested money in developing self-driving, electric vehicles and other technology. The company last year launched an electric car with Chinese automaker BYD Auto, a unit of BYD Ltd.

According to its prospectus, Didi lost 15 billion yuan ($2.3 billion) in 2018, 9.7 billion yuan ($1.5 billion) in 2019 and 10.6 billion yuan ($1.6 billion) last year. It said Didi had $3 billion in cash as of December 31.


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