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Not be outdone by the U.S. and its Washio, Chinese Internet giant Tencent has invested $3.2 million in an on-demand laundry service with an app made by laundromat chain Rongchan, reports say.
The service, named Edaixi, currently receives about 1,000 orders per day and hopes to reach 10,000 per day within the next year. It offers a flat-rate $16 service for the washing of all items in one of its custom laundry bags, unlike most of its competitors who charge per item of clothing. Customers can also get individual items of clothing, shoes, furniture, air conditioners, and handbags cleaned through the service.
Edaixi’s customers can submit their orders through the website, native app, or WeChat messaging app, which Tencent owns. The service then picks up the laundry and returns it all clean within 72 hours. It aims eventually to be able to always pick a customer’s laundry within 48 minutes.
Rongchang will use the new funding to expand the service’s coverage in Beijing, the only city where it’s currently available, as well as to expand to additional cities. The company took on Tencent as an investor because of its belief in the Internet giant’s understanding of the online-to-offline model, Rongchang’s founder Zhang Rongyao told 36k.
Competitor 24tidy raised new funding just a few days ago, and Edaixi also faces competition from Ganxike, Yiyigi, and WeWash on its turf.
Such services have already been seeing popularity in some U.S. cities, with Washio leading the craze after competitor and fellow Y Combinator startup, Prim, folded. Washio raised $10 million in early June from a host of investors.
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