Cash-strapped Yidao clinches ride-hailing license

Updated 2017-05-09 17:01:20 chinadaily.com.cn

Yidao Yongche, Chinese ride-sharing services provider controlled by internet conglomerate LeEco, has obtained an official operating license from Beijing transport authorities.

Jia Yueting, LeEco's founder and chairman, announced the news on his official weibo account on Monday, describing it as "a historic turnaround" for Yidao.

The news comes as Yidao drivers are demanding overdue payment while users are concerned about their deposits. The company's founder Zhou Hang accused LeEco of misappropriation of fund before he left.

The license, posted on Jia's weibo, allows Yidao to run car-hailing businesses for four years until May 7, 2021, and was issued by the Transport Administration Bureau of Beijing Municipal Transportation Commission.

It is the first such license granted by Beijing authorities to a private car-hailing company and also to a consumer-to-consumer platform, Jia said.

Shouqi Limousine and Chauffeur, a subsidiary of the State-owned Shou Qi Group, won the city's first online car-hailing license in February. Leading player Didi Chuxing received its in Tianjin.

China unveiled nationwide regulations for car-hailing services in July last year, urging the platform providers to seek formal qualifications. Major cities followed by specifying requirements.

Under the draft rules in Beijing, drivers on car-hailing platforms shall have a local household registration, or hukou, and their vehicles shall have local plates.

Analysts said it still remains to be seen whether the license can save Yidao given its rocky relationship with drivers and the strict operating rules.

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