Ofo raises $866 mn funding from Alibaba

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The round marked a new funding record in the bike-sharing industry, the company claimed in an official statement. It is a combination of debt and equity financing. "Ofo will continue to put our customers first and lead the bike-sharing industry with technological innovation and efficient operations", he said. Last year, the company raised $700 million from a group of investors, including Alibaba Group, in a bid to fuel its competition with Tencent-backed MoBike.

The expansion plans come despite the decision last week by one rival, GoBee, to abandon European operations after 60% of its bikes were vandalised or destroyed within four months of launch. The company has already made inroads into France, Japan and the U.S., and says it is operational in around 20 countries. "We have approved a new wave of bikes to be introduced to the city". Beijing has 700,000 shared bikes, and 11 million registered users, almost half the capital's population.

Both Ofo and Mobike have reached valuations of more than a billion dollars and, combined, hold over 90% of China's bike-sharing market (and are also expanding into other countries). More than 6,000 residents signed up during the first few weeks of the scheme, with Ofo promising to introduce 300 more bikes this month.

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But in other European cities, local authorities are clamping down on unregulated bike-sharing schemes. "Our mission is to solve the last-mile transportation problem in India's urban areas, and we see vast potential in Pune for ofo's convenient, affordable and low carbon way of travel", says Rajarshi Sahai, Director of Public Policy and Communications at ofo.

In January, it acquired similarly cash-strapped bike-sharing startup Bluegogo. Last month, Zoomcar launched PEDL, its cycle-sharing vertical in Bengaluru's HSR Layout, and the company is looking to expand this across the city, and the country. Mobycy also launched a dockless bike-sharing platform and raised a $500,000 seed funding.

In July, the Beijing-based bike-sharing platform completed a Series E funding of $700 million, making them the world's biggest and most valued bike-sharing company.

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