Ride-hailing firm Didi Chuxing recently changed lanes to enter China’s vibrant food delivery market. A fleet of mopeds was despatched in Wuxi for the beta testing week which began April 2nd. By day three, April 4, the platform had taken a third of the market in Wuxi then a week later, on April 9, Didi Waimai (Didi Takeaway) officially launched and handled 334,000 deliveries that day, making it the top food delivery firm in the city.

Didi’s move to food delivery mirror’s Meituan-Dianping’s move into the ride-hailing world, also starting in Jiangsu province. Meituan Dache quietly started taking passengers in nearby Nanjing in February then in Shanghai from mid March, where the company was called in by authorities over regulations. Didi later thanked Meituan for bringing competition to the market.  

Food delivery platforms have previously been hit by food safety problems, but Didi Waimai claims that all restaurants used are licensed and all drivers fully trained.

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Frank Hersey

Frank Hersey is a Beijing-based tech reporter who's been coming to China since 2001. He tries to go beyond the headlines to explain the context and impact of developments in China's tech sector. Get in...