In its plan to turn on the heat against its major rival, Uber Technologies Inc, China’s DiDi Chuxing has stepped into financial services.
Starting with its local unit in Brazil and by extension South America, the ride-hailing giant said its drivers can now get a card to receive payments which can be used for various financial services.
“In Brazil, for instance, there are many people who can drive but they’re not able to become Didi drivers mainly because they’re unbanked. So we went ahead and started to offer banking services to them,” Zheng Bu, head of Didi’s International Business Technology was quoted by Bloomberg as the RISE Conference held in Hong Kong on Wednesday.
This direction is a crucial development that could tip the market in its favour given its strength in the market.
Valued at over $40 billion as a private concern, the Chinese ride-hailing company said it completes over 36 million trips per day.
While Uber is still a bigger player compared to DiDi on a global scale, the Chinese player has proven to be more dogged and aggressive than even Lyft Inc.
In recent years, DiDi has been using proxy ride-hailing startups to compete in some markets where it is not available.
Last year, DiDi made its first investment in Taxify, recently rebranded to Bolt. The Estonian company with key focus on Europe and Africa also announced a new round of funding with the participation of DiDi and other investors.