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Hellobike is not tired of fundraising: Yicai
Posted on Thursday, 07 December 2017 11:28
Shanghai Junzheng Network is riding on continued interest by venture capitalist in bike-sharing, according to Yicai Global, despite some players getting flat tyres as the fast-growing, cash-burning segment begins to claim some of its first victims.
Better known as Hellobike, the one-year-old company is pedalling head-first into the fray after fetching USD 350.00 million from its latest round of funding from investors ranging from Alibaba’s Ant Financial to electric vehicle developer WM Motor.
A source told Yicai in an exclusive interview the bike-sharing platform is already busily preparing to extend this series with a view to raising more money in this latest cash call than it did in the last equity injection.
The English-language news arm of Yicai Media added Ant Financial, the Jack Ma-controlled operator of Alipay, is likely to participate in this upcoming round.
Founded just last year, Hellobike is currently focused on tier-three and -four cities in order to avoid direct competition with the industry giants such as the unicorns Mobike and Ofo, which, between them, have carved up almost all of the market.
Its USD 350.00 million equity injection is the fast-growing company’s first since it merged with Youon Low Carbon Technology, the subsidiary of China’s first listed bike-sharing company, Changzhou Youon Public Bicycle System, in October.
However, Hellobike has previously held three other financing rounds, which including backing from GGV Capital and Chengwei Capital.
Is winter coming for the venture capital-fuelled bike-sharing sector? After all, the frenzy has already claimed the industry’s third-largest player, Bluegogo.
Cited by South China Morning Post, early Hellobike investor GGV Capital said a merger is pretty much inevitable at this point as it is the easiest way to scale down the top rivals.
This is what happened during the ride-hailing battle as a wave of consolidation swept through the sector and led to the merger of market leaders Didi and Kuaidi, the newspaper noted.
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