What happened: Chinese ride-hailing company Banma Kuaipao (斑马快跑) is now rebranded as “Banma Ride-hailing” (斑马网约车). Banma recently completed a new round of funding, raising RMB 300 million from QJY Capital. The company also signed a strategic partnership agreement with Zotye Auto, under which Zotye Auto will provide Banma with new energy and gasoline vehicles. The company plans to move its R&D and operation headquarter to Beijing from Wuhan in the near future for the purpose of recruitment.
Why it’s important: Banma has obtained 125 licenses in China—more than Didi Chuxing and many other competitors have. The company said it has been focusing on obtaining licenses in second and third-tier cities, while other competitors like Didi Chuxing, Shenzhou, Shouqi focus on first-tier cities. Banma is currently the fifth largest ride-hailing platform in China.