By Juro Osawa and Rick Carew
HONG KONG — China’s homegrown competitor to Uber Technologies Inc. has raised $7 billion in its latest fundraising effort, giving it a host of powerful allies including Apple Inc. to fend off the global ride-hailing champion locally.
Didi Chuxing Technology Co., the country’s biggest ride-sharing company, closed a $4.5 billion fundraising round that attracted $1 billion from Apple /zigman2/quotes/202934861/composite AAPL -2.09% and $600 million from China’s top life insurer, according to people familiar with the situation. The round values the company at more than $25 billion, they said.
In addition, Didi has secured a $2.5 billion debt package from China Merchants Bank Co. /zigman2/quotes/209899244/delayed HK:3968 +6.60% , according to one of the people.
The fundraising will leave Didi flush with cash to help it battle Uber in China’s competitive ride-hailing market. Didi will now have more than $10 billion in cash on hand following the new fundraising round through equity and debt, according to one of the people.