China’s booming bike sharing sector

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First, there was the ride-sharing war between Didi Chuxing and Uber. Now, the battle for the best bike sharing startup is heating up. Bike sharing is thriving in China, with investors pouring hundreds of millions of dollars in to two of the country’s biggest players: Mobike and Ofo. To date, Mobike has raised a total of $928 million, while Ofo has recently received $700 million, raising its total funding to $1.29 billion. What attracts investors to these two startups is their mammoth scale. Each company boasts of having more than 100 million registered users and their bikes can be found in more than 20 cities in China. Now the big question is, can these companies be profitable given their weak business model, slim margins, and losses from thieves and vandals? It seems that investors are undeterred and both companies are eyeing global domination and have expanded outside of China.

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