Chinese ride-hailing platform Didi Chuxing has raised USD$300 million for its driverless vehicle subsidiary according to a report on Thursday from Reuters.
The investment round was led by IDG Capital, with CPE, CCB International, Guotai Junan International and the Russia-China Investment Fund also taking part. The fundraising adds to $500 million raised by Didi Chuxing in May 2020.
Didi commenced research and development of driverless vehicles back in 2016, and announced in 2020 that it would launch a robo-taxi service in Shanghai.
The company already has approval to conduct open-read testing in Beijing, Shanghai and Suzhou, as well as outside of China in California.
On 27 June 2020 Didi launched its driverless passenger vehicle demonstration project in Shanghai, marking the first time the company unveiled its autonomous vehicle services to the public.
Zhang Bo (张博), CEO of Didi’s autonomous vehicle unit, said at the time that the company would use a “mixed deployment method of drivers and autonomous vehicles, to supplement restrictions on the use of self-driving vehicles in designated areas.”
Didi founder and CEO Cheng Wei (程维) has said that he anticipates “investment of at least ten years” before autonomous vehicles reach technological and commercial maturity.