(Yicai Global) March. 26 -- Meituan Dache, the newest player in China's ride-hailing sector, has accrued one-third of total market share in Shanghai since launching in the eastern city on March 21, says the CEO of its operator Beijing Sankuai Online Technology Co.> /n/n/n/n/n
The firm, which also runs leading Chinese meal delivery platform Meituan Waimai, has earmarked USD1 billion in funds to develop its ride-hailing business which aims to rival market leader Didi Chuxing Technology Co., said Sankuai Online Technology CEO Wang Xin during the China Development Forum in Beijing.
The Shanghai launch represents Tencent Holdings Ltd.-backed Meituan's second official roll-out of ride-hailing after it commenced operations in Nanjing, capital of eastern China's Jiangsu province.
Wang aims to leverage Meituan's customer pool, which he says in the largest in China. Some 320 million users ordered takeout, made hotel reservations, called cars among other services through its platform last year. Its userbase and comprehensive service capabilities give the firm a competitive edge over Didi, he said.
Meituan and the world's largest car-hailing provider Didi Chuxing Technology Co. have been at loggerheads after announcing plans to step into each other's respective primary business areas. As Meituan moves into ride-hailing, Didi branching out into meal delivery services, sending freshly prepared food from restaurants to customers at home.
Meituan aims to expand car-hailing operators into seven other cities, namely, Beijing, Shanghai, Chengdu, Hangzhou, Wenzhou, Fuzhou and Xiamen, while Didi wants to open its takeout business in nine more cities including Nanjing in the near future.