Ofo investor Zhu Xiaohu (also known as Allen Zhu) from GSR Ventures is rumored to have sold his shares in ofo to Alibaba for $3 billion (in Chinese). The source is Zhu’s brother-in-law Ou Chengxiao who revealed Zhu’s plans at a public event a few days ago.
According to a transcription of Ou’s speech circulating online, Zhu sold out shares in ofo to Alibaba for $3 billion with ofo’s valuation at $10 billion. In July 2017, ofo completed its Series E financing round led by Alibaba with an estimated valuation at $3 billion. That is to say, if Ou’s remarks were accurate, ofo’s market valuation has surged threefold over half a year.
TechNode has reached out to ofo who responded with “no comment,” and GSR Ventures also told TechNode’s Chinese sister publication that “there are no comments.”
Zhu Xiaohu, an early stage investor of ofo, said in September 2017 that only a merger could make both Mobike and ofo profitable, which was soon being translated as a statement that investors are pushing the merger. Mobike and ofo, however, both denied the merger. Later in December 2017, Zhu told local media that it would be unlikely for the two bike-rental players to merge.
On top of that, Didi was also said to be the driving force to push the merger forward. However, cracks have reportedly emerged in DiDi and ofo partnership. Didi is building its own bike-rental business which will be added in its app along with Bluegogo’s and ofo’s services. The merger, in this case, is seemingly unlikely to happen in the near future.