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China's ride-sharing company partners with Lyft to expand cross-border market

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NEW YORK, Sept. 16 (Xinhua) -- Chinese ride-sharing company Didi Kuaidi on Wednesday announced here a decision to enter into a strategic partnership with Lyft, a U.S.-based ride-hailing firm.

The Chinese company also announced that it has made a strategic investment of 100 million U.S. dollars in Lyft.

Under the partnership, the two parties will launch in-depth collaboration between their technology and product development teams, to achieve synergies in product innovation and improve user experiences.

The two companies will share local knowledge and other business-related resources to explore new models of cross-platform, cross-regional market development, with an aim to build a healthy, collaborative global ridesharing industry.

As part of the alliance, Didi and Lyft will launch cross-platform interoperability so their existing users can access local on-demand transportation services offered by the partner company from their native applications when they are traveling in the U.S. and China.

With this partnership, the two companies will be working together to enable people to use Lyft app when they travel to China and get a ride wherever they are going. The same will be true to Didi's users who travel to the U.S., claimed a blog posted at the Lyft's corporate website.

Jean Liu, president of Didi, said, "Lyft is the pioneer in ridesharing innovation and Didi has built success with a unique model that offers comprehensive transportation solutions in 360 Chinese cities. Today we offer private car, carpooling, bus, chauffeur and taxi hailing services to more than 200 million users in China. These along with other connected services will extend to Lyft's passengers. More importantly, the partnership with Lyft enables us to join forces in rapidly advancing global innovation and growth."

John Zimmer, co-founder and president of Lyft, said, "Lyft was founded with the mission of connecting people and their communities through improved transportation. We are extremely excited to partner with Didi as they share our commitment to redesign cities putting people at the forefront. Didi is the clear market leader in China and has invaluable local expertise. In today's rideshare environment, where every region presents a unique set of challenges and opportunities, partnering with the homegrown leader is the winning approach to Chinese expansion."

According to Liu, there were more than 7.8 million people who traveled between the countries in 2014 and the trend continues to expand every year.

Didi is the world's largest one-stop mobile transportation platform and has transformed the transportation industry in China, offering a full range of solutions for every type of driver, passenger and commuter. The company, formed in 2012 with a focus on solving China's transportation challenges, was initially a taxi-hailing platform that connected taxi drivers and passengers on a mobile app basis.

Lyft, founded to reconnect people and communities through better transportation in June 2012 by Logan Green and John Zimmer, is the fastest growing rideshare company in the U.S. and its service is now available in 65 American cities.

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