(Bloomberg) — Five years ago, Uber Technologies Inc. bowed out of the world’s second-largest economy by selling its China business to rival DiDi Global Inc. in exchange for a stake in the company. Now, the U.S. ride-hailing company is cashing in on its trade.
Didi, the biggest ride-hailing company in China, raised about $4.4 billion in its U.S. initial public offering on Tuesday and sold more shares than it originally planned. Didi’s stock closed up 1% at $14.14 on Wednesday, giving the company a market value of about $68 billion.
That makes Uber’s current 12% stake worth about $8.1 billion. Didi’s public offering is the second largest U.S. listing by a Chinese company, behind Alibaba Group Holding Ltd.’s $25 billion debut in 2014, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
Founded in 2012 by Cheng Wei, Didi emerged as Uber’s biggest rival in China at a time the San Francisco-based company was vying to expand globally. In their battle for market share, Uber burned through billions of dollars before stopping its losses by selling Uber China to Didi, known as Didi Chuxing at the time. The deal left Uber with a 20% stake in its competitor. Uber has been selling some of its shares in Didi in the run-up to the IPO, reducing its holding from about 14% in the first quarter.
Though Didi is dominant in China, momentum in the region is beginning to slow. The company plans to use the IPO funds to invest in technology, increase its presence in some international markets and introduce new products, according to its U.S. filings.
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