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(This post has been updated.)
Baidu and Uber held a press conference in China today to confirm a partnership that will bring the San Francisco-based ride-sharing service to a massive new market.
However, Bloomberg previously reported that Baidu, the country’s largest search engine, would invest up to $600 million in Uber. The latter will get a significant boost by being integrated into Baidu Maps.
The latest deal comes after Uber recently raised $1.2 billion to fuel an aggressive expansion plan. That plan for growth has encountered some problems, with Uber being banned in India after one of its drivers was arrested and charged with raping a passenger.
The company has also been facing a storm of negative publicity in the U.S., where its use of customer data and its privacy policies have been under fire.
Uber still faces a tough landscape in China, according to Reuters. Two heavy hitters are already established in the market and are backed by China tech giants Alibaba and Tencent. By comparison, Uber is relatively small and less well-known.
[Updated at 7:35 a.m. PST] Uber issued a press release, though it didn’t offer any additional details.
“Uber’s rapid growth in the last four years is testimony to the tremendous demand for easy, reliable, and inexpensive transportation,” Baidu chairman and chief executive Robin Li said in the release. “We’re delighted that we can work together to help meet that demand — and we’re excited by this pioneering strategic partnership between a Chinese and an American Internet company.”
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