Caocao Chuxing, the ride-hailing arm of automaker Geely, recently closed a new round of investment worth billions of yuan (nine figures in US dollars), a source familiar with the matter told 36Kr. The investment is China’s first domestic equity deal in the ride-hailing industry this year.
Enterprise information query platform Tianyancha shows that Caocao Chuxing’s operating body, Hangzhou Youxing Technology Co., Ltd., adjusted its share structure on August 4, adding Zhejiang Geely Holding Group Co. as a new shareholder. Meanwhile, its registered capital increased from around RMB 366 million (USD 56.58 million) to around RMB 433 million (USD 67 million).
Geely Technology Group is currently the largest shareholder of Caocao Chuxing with a 77.33% stake. The newly joined Zhejiang Geely Holding Group Co. is the second largest shareholder, holding 15.42% of the company’s shares and subscribed capital contribution of RMB 66.721 million (USD 10.3 million).
Caocao Chuxing was established in 2015 and provides online ride-hailing services in 62 cities across China.
According to statistics provided by China’s National Ride-Hailing Supervision Information Interactive Platform, in July, the regulator logged more than 776 million orders across the country, up 10.7% from June. According to data provided by data aggregator Qimai, app downloads for Caocao Chuxing in July hit 909,610, up 99% from June. Single-day downloads on July 5 reached 41,185.
Over the past two years, China’s ride-hailing sector has gone through a capital winter and the pace of financing has significantly slowed down.
The latest round of financing indicates that investors might have identified new opportunities in this space, possibly due to the Cyberspace Administration of China’s cybersecurity investigation into Didi. With the country’s largest app-based ride provider unable to sustain continued growth during the probe, other ride platforms see a chance to erode its market dominance.
Caocao offered no comment when 36Kr attempted to confirm the financing. Chinese media outlets previously reported that Caocao Chuxing had completed its Series B financing, but the news was not confirmed by the company.
Prior to this, Caocao Chuxing closed two rounds of investments. It received RMB 1 billion (USD 514.6 million) from Silicon Paradise Asset Management, Zheshang Venture Capital, and Longqi Capital in January 2018. In May 2018, Zheshang Venture Capital made another undisclosed investment in the company.
KrASIA Connection features translated and adapted content published by 36Kr. This article was originally written by Yang Lin for 36Kr. It was translated and adapted by Mengyuan Ge.