Apple says it has made a big investment in the dominant Chinese ride-hailing service Didi Chuxing, dealing a major blow to its rival Uber.
The investment – the equivalent of 883 million euros – is to help Apple better understand the critical Chinese market according to Chief Executive Tim Cook, who is due to visit the country this month.
“We are making the investment for a number of strategic reasons, including a chance to learn more about certain segments of the China market,” Cook said. “Of course, we believe it will deliver a strong return for our invested capital over time as well.”
Didi says it handles more than 11 million rides a day with 300 million Chinese users.
Didi Chuxing, formerly known as Didi Kuaidi, said in a statement that this was the single largest investment it has ever received
This rare investment by the tech giant comes as Apple tries to reinvigorate sales in China and as its main smartphone business slows.
Although Apple’s sales in China have slumped amid slowing economic growth there, Cook stressed he remained confident in the market.
“(The deal) reflects our excitement about their growing business … and also our continued confidence in the long term in China’s economy,” Cook said.
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