Apple Inc. has announced that it is making a $1 billion investment in ride-hailing company Didi, providing the Chinese startup with a formidable partner as it competes against rival Uber Technologies Inc. Apple will assist the company in scaling up its ride-sharing platform in China.
With the investment, Didi has now raised $3 billion in funding and is valued at close to $26 billion.
Formed a year ago, Didi serves 300 million users in China, handling more than 11 million rides on a daily basis. The company offers taxi and ride sharing services in 400 Chinese cities, supporting its operations through a network of 14 million drivers.
In a Didi company statement, Apple Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook said “we are extremely impressed by the business they’ve built and their excellent leadership team, and we look forward to supporting them as they grow.”
The Apple investment comes as the company faces increasing pressure to expand into high-margin areas of growth as demand for its smartphones declines.