BEI­JING:

The Pak Banker - - COMPANIES/BOSS -

The chief ex­ec­u­tive of Uber Tech­nolo­gies Inc UBER.UL said the com­pany is burn­ing through more than a bil­lion dol­lars a year in China, where it is locked in a fierce bat­tle with larger lo­cal ri­val Didi Kuaidi to lure con­sumers with cut-price deals. Uber's China unit boosted its val­u­a­tion last month to more than $8 bil­lion af­ter it raised over $1 bil­lion in its lat­est fund­ing round, al­though the U.S. ride-hail­ing app is not yet prof­itable in the main­land due to in­tense com­pe­ti­tion. "We're prof­itable in the USA, but we're los­ing over $1 bil­lion a year in China," Uber's CEO Travis Kalan­ick told Cana­dian tech­nol­ogy plat­form Be­takit. Uber of­fi­cials in China con­firmed the com­ments in an email to Reuters on Thurs­day. "We have a fierce com­peti­tor that's un­prof­itable in ev­ery city they ex­ist in, but they're buy­ing up mar­ket share. I wish the world wasn't that way." Uber and China's Didi Kuaidi, backed by Chi­nese tech­nol­ogy gi­ants Ten­cent Hold­ings Ltd (0700.HK) and Alibaba Group Hold­ing Ltd (BABA.N), have both spent heav­ily to sub­si­dize rides to gain mar­ket share, bet­ting on China's In­ter­net-linked trans­port mar­ket be­com­ing the world's big­gest. Uber China said in an emailed state­ment that Didi Kuaidi was hav­ing to spend "many mul­ti­ples" more than the U.S. firm to in­crease its share of the mar­ket, adding that Uber's China op­er­a­tion was backed up by prof­itable ones out­side the re­gion.

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