Less than a week after China’s Didi Chuxing invested in Taxify, a taxi hailing firm operating in Europe and Africa, the firm has today announced that it has made a strategic investment into Careem, a Dubai-headquartered ride-hailing and internet platform in the Middle East and North Africa.
Together, the two firms will share knowledge in intelligent transportation technology, product development, and operations and is a great step towards Didi’s mission to build an open and sustainable global mobility ecosystem.
“Growing urban populations and economic and social diversity in the MENA region present enormous opportunities for the ride-hailing economy,” said Cheng Wei, founder and CEO of Didi Chuxing. “Careem is the region’s technology and market leader. Through technology exchange and co-development, we look to support continued growth and transformation of the region’s transportation industry, tap into the significant potential of the local internet economy and foster more innovative services for a broader network of communities around the world.”
Founded in Dubai in July 2012, Careem has more than 12 million customers and is available in English, Arabic, French, Urdu and Turkish, and offers a variety of mobility services. There are currently over 250,000 drivers on its platform in more than 80 cities across 13 countries in the Middle East and North Africa, including Pakistan, Turkey, Egypt, Morocco, Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Qatar, Kuwait, Bahrain, Oman, Jordan, Lebanon, and Palestine.
The deal opens up Careem to Didi technology and partnerships with other brands like US based Lyft, India’s Ola, Taxify in Africa and Europe. Didi is powered by big data-driven AI technologies and offers Taxi, Private Car, and other mobility options to over 400 million users in 400 cities with a daily ride volume surpassing 20 million.
“Didi Chuxing brings leading edge AI capabilities, insight and expertise to our organization as we enter our next phase of growth,” said Mudassir Sheikha, CEO and co-founder of Careem. “This evolution in our long relationship will enable Careem to more effectively pursue growth opportunities through continued innovation and sustainability. DiDi’s investment is yet another endorsement of the significant regional opportunity to leap-frog traditional infrastructure and improve the lives of people in our communities.”
DiDi’s partnership with Careem marks the company’s first collaboration in the Middle East and North Africa and further aids Careem’s mission to build sophisticated urban transport infrastructure to have technology-enabled mass-transit systems that will simplify the lives of people and accelerate economic growth.