China’s Didi recruits Colombian drivers ahead of Bogota launch-Reuters

What happened: Ride-hailing giant Didi is recruiting drivers in Bogota, the capital of Colombia, as it prepares to launch its services in the country. Didi said in a statement that it hopes it can “meet the market’s expectations” as it recruits drivers with “an attractive offer.” The company did not give any indication as to when it would launch its services.

Why it’s important: Didi has identified Latin America as a critical battleground in its attempts to take on international rival Uber. The two companies are already going head-to-head in Mexico and Brazil, where Didi has attracted drivers with higher pay and bonuses. The move also highlights Didi’s efforts to offset issues its faces in China, including stricter policing of its platform. The company has already moved some of its senior executives to Latin America to lead its expansion in countries including Brazil, Colombia, and Peru. Uber is popular in Colombia, but illegal, with drivers risking a 25-year license suspension if they are caught working for the platform.

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Chris Udemans

Christopher Udemans is a Shanghai-based data and graphics reporter. He covers Chinese artificial intelligence, mobility, and cybersecurity. You can contact him at chrisudemans [at] technode [dot] com.