Didi Chuxing and SoftBank partner to launch taxi-hailing service in Japan

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Didi Chuxing and SoftBank partner to launch a taxi-hailing firm in Japan

Chinese ride-hailing firm Didi Chuxing has teamed up with Japan's SoftBank to roll out a taxi-hailing venture in Japan. The development first reported by Reuters stated that, the new venture will directly compete with Uber in Japan. The two companies expect to start pilot programs in Osaka, Kyoto, Fukuoka, Tokyo and other locations this year.


"Didi and SoftBank will diligently study local market conditions and policies, and will actively engage with industry practitioners, policymakers, and other stakeholders, with the aim of building an open and inclusive platform that will be available to all of Japan’s taxi operators,” the Chinese firm said.

The move to launch a new taxi venture in Japan underscores a recent push by Didi to boost its presence in markets outside China and intensifies the firm's global battle with US rival Uber Technologies, whose China business it bought in 2016.

SoftBank, an existing investor in Didi Chuxing, had raised $4 billion to fund its global push in December valuing the company at more than $50 billion. In the past, SoftBank has backed Uber rivals Ola and Grab, and it even considered a stake in Lyft.

The Chinese company is looking to break into Mexico. Additionally, the company is expanding its presence in regions outside the Chinese mainland including Hong Kong and Taiwan.

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