SoftBank-backed China’s leading e-hailing service, Didi Chuxing is expanding into South Africa, to challenge market leaders Bolt and Uber.
The official launch, which brings DiDi Chuxing to Cape Town, comes after a successful pilot program in Gqeberha in March.
DiDi Chuxing, which was established in 2012, is the world’s largest e-hailing service, with an estimated 550 million users and over 30 million drivers spread across 16 countries.
The South African version of the app has been unveiled and is now available for free, but it is only available to Cape Town residents.
The first phase of the expansion focuses on hiring drivers who won’t need to share their fares with DiDi noted as a “0 percent commission” by the e-hailing service for the first month after signing-up.
This expansion in South Africa (which began in Cape Town) is the company’s first in Africa and seventeenth active region.
After raising US$21.2B in venture capital, the tech company’s expansion into the South African market comes amid speculation of a public listing.