#Asia Didi-Uber deal is running into antitrust roadblocks in China: WSJ


The acquisition would create a US$35 billion company with little competition in Asia’s largest market


Didi Chuxing’s purchase of Uber China last month is being investigated by China’s Ministry of Commerce over questions if the deal violates the country’s antitrust law, as first reported by the Wall Street Journal.

Ministry spokesperson Shen Danyang told reporters at a press conference that the government is looking at the protection of consumer interests and whether or not the deal will allow for fair competition.

Also Read: Uber acquires Israeli startup Otto, founded less than a year ago, for US$680 million

The day after the deal, Shen said the Ministry had not received a declaration of undertakings — which he noted should be done prior to completing the arrangement.

The deal created a company worth US$35 billion dollars but more importantly, merged the only two companies that were in real competition with one another.

Should the deal pass through the investigation, Didi will acquire Uber China whilst Uber will receive a 5.89 per cent stake in the new company. Didi also will invest US$1 billion into Uber.

The deal made waves across the entire Asian ride-hailing industry. That week, an email from Grab CEO Anthony Tan saying Uber will lose Southeast Asia  was ‘leaked’. Additionally, evidence emerged the company is raising US$1 billion.

After the Uber-Didi deal, Go-jek also announced it had raised US$550 million.

Also Read: MaGIC, Uber and Digi join forces to launch an ideation lab in Malaysia

Last week, it was revealed that Uber has lost US$1.2 billion in the first half of 2016 — but these losses should recede as it spends less in China.

Photo courtesy of Uber.


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