Chinese ride-hailing giant Didi Chuxing is reportedly gearing up to carve out its grocery delivery unit for a separate listing as early as 2022, a year after a planned listing for its core business slated for this summer, The Information reported on Thursday.

Why it matters: The Beijing-based transportation giant is gearing up its grocery delivery business, a community-based group-buy platform, as a new revenue source amid slowing growth in its core ride-hailing business.

READ MORE: INSIGHTS | As ridesharing market plateaus, Didi tries everything

  • Major tech companies, from Alibaba to Meituan, are pushing aggressively into the community group-buy sector despite tightening regulatory control.
  • Chinese tech giants often manage different business lines that are too complicated to operate under a single entity, and tend to spin off their non-core businesses via IPOs. JD.com affiliate JD Health debuted on the Hong Kong stock exchange in December, while the bourse just approved JD Logistics for a separate IPO. Fintech arm JD Digits withdrew its application to list on Shanghai’s STAR Market in April.
  • The Didi news comes shortly after it reportedly filed confidentially with the US Securities and Exchange Commission for an initial public offering that could raise several billion dollars at a valuation of at least $100 billion.

Details: In a discussion with investors, Didi executives said that they intend to take its community group-buy unit Chengxin Youxuan public sometime between 2022 and 2023 , The Information reported citing people with knowledge of the matter. The exact timing hasn’t been finalized.

  • The report said the discussion took place during recent fundraising talks for the unit.
  • For the round, existing investors Citic Private Equity and angel investor Wang Gang will contribute $1.2 billion, while Didi purchased $3 billion of Chengxin’s convertible bonds, according to the report.
  • The news echoed Bloomberg’s February report of a $4 billion round for the grocery arm, which is intended to boost its growth amid increase demand.
  • The report did not specify the location for the potential listing.
  • Didi spokeswoman declined to comment on the news when contacted by TechNode on Friday afternoon.

Context: Community group-buying firms, including Tencent-backed Xingsheng Youxuan and MissFresh, have attracted billions in startup investment.

  • In March, China’s top market regulator levied fines totaling RMB 6.5 million (around $1 million) on five community group-buy platforms, including Chengxin Youxuan and rival platforms backed by Pinduoduo, Meituan, and Alibaba, for price dumping.

Emma Lee

Emma Lee is Shanghai-based tech writer, covering startups and tech happenings in China and Asia in general. We are looking for stories related to tech and China. Reach her at lixin@technode.com.