scorecardDidi has secured record funding, and Uber should be worried
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Didi has secured record funding, and Uber should be worried

Didi has secured record funding, and Uber should be worried
IndiaSmallbusiness1 min read

Didi Chuxing, the ride-hailing giant from Beijing, China, just secured more than $5.5 billion in its latest round of funding, which is said to have placed the company’s worth at more than $50 billion. This funding could, as per experts, be used to harness artificial intelligence, build driverless cars, and compete more aggressively in foreign markets.

The news has added to the already existing long list of worries for Uber, the transportation network company from California, which sees Didi as a major rival across the globe.

Uber is undergoing several problems in its operations, with lawsuits and image problems being some of them. In the past, Uber had agreed to sell its China operations to Didi following a long phase of competition.

Also read: Uber is taking its fight to a new battleground - and other tech companies should take note

"The bruising battle with Uber taught [Didi] a lot," William Bao Bean, a Shanghai-based partner at venture capital fund SOSV, told Bloomberg. "Now it's battle-hardened, and can buy the best talent in the world to attempt to go big in China, and also go global."

Even as Didi and Uber both fight their respective issues, investors are still sure that eventually, both will end up with fleets of driverless vehicles across several global cities.

"The biggest risk any investor faces isn't losing money," says Andy Mok, managing director at Red Pagoda Resources, an executive search firm in Beijing, "but missing out on the next Apple or Google."

Both Didi and Uber have got big dreams, but Didi has got the backing from one of the world’s largest investors, the Japan-based SoftBank Group Corp.

Also read: Here’s why Uber’s Kalanick should fear Softbank founder Masayoshi Son

"SoftBank is known for making pretty risky investments -- like in Alibaba and Yahoo. Sometimes they pay off very big, sometimes they don't," said Duncan Clark, founder and chairman at advisory firm BDA China.