Monday, March 18, 2024

News: Uber's Chinese rival wants to open an office in Rotherham


A Chinese ride-hailing giant has applied for planning permission to open a new operation in Rotherham.

DiDi Global Inc. is the world’s leading mobility technology platform. It offers a wide range of app-based services across markets including Asia-Pacific, Latin America and Africa, including ride hailing, taxi hailing, chauffeur, hitch and other forms of shared mobility as well as auto solutions, food delivery, intra-city freight and financial services.

With services such as DiDi Express, DiDi Taxi, DiDi Food and DiDi Delivery, and over 500 million users, a planned expansion into the UK has slowed due to reported regulatory challenges and cybersecurity and privacy concerns.

DiDi Mobility secured a private hire operator licence for Sheffield back in 2021. A licence to operate in Rotherham was secured last year but it will expire in May 2024.

The company has now applied for planning permission to enable it to take on an office within Bizspace's Silkstone House in Manvers, Rotherham.

The application explains: "Although we are applying as a private hire app operator, we act exactly like a normal E business. We will not have customers on site nor have any phone operators and no drivers or vehicles Didi Mobility UK Ltd."

The move is similar to rival firm Bolt, the Estonian company that has an operator's licence in Sheffield, and secured planning permission to operate from Bizspace's offices in Templeborough in 2022. Another rival, Uber also has a private hire operator's licence from Rotherham and Sheffield councils.

Last year, Rotherham Councl began consultation on changing its Hackney Carriage (taxi) and Private Hire Licensing Policy. After being found to have "weak and ineffective arrangements for taxi licensing which leave the public at risk," Rotherham's policy is now widely regarded as a benchmark for other local authorities. The new focus is on the increase in out of town vehicles and sub-contracting.

Didi website

Images: DiDi


Anonymous,  March 18, 2024 at 3:33 PM  

It's a pity they couldn't have found office space inside Uber Stand.

Anonymous,  March 27, 2024 at 8:27 AM  

Another example of Chinese world domination?

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