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CHINA BRIEF | Didi Chuxing’s autonomous driving unit closes USD 500 million round led by SoftBank

Didi is also set to test its robotaxi in Beijing.

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Chinese ride-hailing giant Didi Chuxing has secured more than USD 500 million in a SoftBank Vision Fund 2-led fundraising round for its autonomous driving subsidiary, the company announced on Friday.

Didi’s autonomous driving unit was initiated in 2016 and spun off in August 2019. According to the company, the latest fund will help Didi further its advanced research and development of autonomous driving technology and testing, as well as deepen industry cooperation, and accelerate the deployment of autonomous driving services in specific areas in China and abroad.

Didi now has obtained open-road testing licenses in Beijing, Shanghai and Suzhou in China, as well as California in the US, including one of the first licenses in Shanghai to pilot manned autonomous mobility services.

On May 22, in response to reports saying it registered a new company in Beijing, Didi said it’s planning to test its fleet of autonomous vehicles in Beijing.

This article is part of KrASIA’s “China Brief” section, where KrASIA’s reporters will provide quick daily updates about the tech ecosystem in China.