ofo raises over US$700mil in Series E round
By Digital News Asia July 7, 2017
- Station-free bike-sharing platform marked 100 days of operations in Singapore in May
- ofo has connected over 6.5 million bikes to riders in 150 cities across five countries
OFO, a station-free bike-sharing platform, announced that the company has raised over US$700 million in its latest round of financing, the largest in the bike-sharing industry to date.
The funding round is led by Alibaba Group, Hony Capital and Citic Private Equity, with additional participation from current investors Didi Chuxing and DST Global.
“ofo is committed to providing global users with a convenient, efficient, green and healthy way of travel,” said ofo founder and CEO Dai Wei.
“We will continue to improve our services to create better user experiences, accelerate our global expansion strategy, and maintain our position as the leader in the bike-sharing industry. Our vision is to unlock every corner of the world, and make ofo the universal language.”
Since its launch in June of 2015, ofo has become the world’s largest bike-sharing platform with regard to both size and market share.
So far, ofo has connected over 6.5 million bikes to riders in 150 cities across five countries, generating more than 25 million transactions daily. In total, more than two billion rides have been provided to over 100 million users globally.
ofo hopes to be a key contributor towards growing Singapore’s smart city initiative, and by using technology to standardise bicycle-sharing, to further deepen relations with local governments and their user base to provide a more sustainable way of travel.
In May ofo marked 100 days of operations in Singapore, where they have captured 50% of the local bike-sharing market, with more than 100,000 Singapore users clocking in excess of 20,000 journeys daily.
As one of the leading investors, Alibaba is confident in ofo’s growth potential. “ofo has redefined short-distance commuting, enabling a low-carbon footprint experience and delivering value to users and society,” said Alibaba Group executive vice chairman Joe Tsai.
“ofo is the industry leader and we support its open platform strategy. We look forward to working closely with the ofo team to unlock the full potential of the bike-sharing industry.”
Hony Capital chairman and CEO John Zhao said, “Hony Capital thinks highly of ofo’s business strategy, innovation capacity and team execution. We believe that we will establish another flagship enterprise in the sharing economy.”
Didi Chuxing stated that Didi and ofo are both practitioners under China’s “Mass Entrepreneurship and Innovation” policy, benefit from the sharing economy, and hold common values. Didi has full confidence in the strategy and execution of ofo’s management team.
By the end of 2017, ofo plans to deploy 20 million bikes to the bike-sharing ecosystem, growing its service to reach 200 cities in 20 countries across the globe.
Additionally, ofo has become one of the first enterprises to adopt the global NB-IoT (Narrow Band Internet of Things) technology for extensive commercial use.
China Telecom will provide nationwide wireless Internet coverage for ofo, while Huawei has equipped ofo bikes with NB-IoT chips and other useful telecommunication technologies.
In the near future, ofo’s bikes will serve as central hubs connecting riders to net-based resources via the Internet of Things and creating an AI-based eco closed loop.
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