Meituan Taxi, the ride-hailing unit of Chinese local life services giant Meituan, on September 15 joined Tencent‘s travel service platform on WeChat for operations in Shanghai. Following this cooperation, users in Shanghai can select ride-hailing services provided through the Meituan app, the Meituan Taxi app, Meituan’s the mini-program on WeChat, or Tencent‘s own travel services. Since Tencent launched an aggregated ride-hailing services platform, the two sides have initiated cooperation in Hangzhou, Zhengzhou, Chongqing, and other Chinese cities.
Tencent‘s travel services platform currently relies on the WeChat ecology, and has introduced several travel service providers. As an aggregated services platform, Tencent doesn’t provide its own ride-hailing services, but gathers various providers together with reliable information. At present, it already has online ride-hailing service providers such as Meituan Taxi, T3 Mobility, Caocao Mobility, Sunshine Mobility, and UCAR.
Regarding Meituan‘s partnership with Tencent in the ride-hailing sector, industry experts commented, “The cooperation between the two companies is expected. The newly launched online ride-hailing aggregated platform will tend to choose a cooperation provider with better service quality and management ability, which will not only provide its users with more stable and high-quality travel services, but will also protect the rights and interests of drivers and promote the sound development of the online ride-hailing industry.”
After ten years of development in China, the country’s ride-hailing car industry has gradually matured, with many players now operating in the domestic market. For example, at the end of July, Huawei officially launched Petal Travel. Analysts believe that players in the market, such as Petal Travel, AutoNavi Mobility of Alibaba and Meituan, are all trying to link with their own business ecology.
Taking Alibaba as an example, through cooperation, mergers and acquisitions and investment with car companies, Alibaba has laid out a large ecosystem in the travel industry including real-time bus information, digital maps, auto e-commerce, smart car solutions and new energy vehicles. With AutoNavi as the core, Alibaba has more possibilities for business expansion.
Meituan‘s ecological layout is similar to Alibaba‘s. As a leading local life services provider in China, Meituan‘s travel services can meet almost all the local needs of its users, reduce the bounce rate of the Meituan app, and enhance ecological competitiveness.