Epoch Times published an analysis article to explain that the shrinkage of DiDi, once China’s largest vehicle for hire company, might be a result of the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP’s) in-fighting.
On April 16, DiDi announced its plan to hold a special shareholder meeting on May 23 to decide whether to remove the company from the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE). Its 2021 financial report showed that, in the fourth quarter, its revenue decreased by 12.7 percent and it had a net loss equivalent to $27 million. In February’s ranking of ride-for-hire market share in China, it was not even on the list of top ten companies.
DiDi’s President is Liu Qing (柳青) who holds the real power in the company. Her father is Liu Chuanzhi (柳传志), the founder of the Lenovo Group, one of China’s largest IT companies. Liu’s family had controlled China’s ride-for-hire business in the past. When Uber was in China, it hired Liu Zhen (柳甄) as the head of its China business. After Uber lost to DiDi, Liu Zhen worked with Liu Qing to merge Uber China’s operation into DiDi. At that time, the combined company had 93 percent of the market share. The same last name of Liu Qing and Liu Zhen are not accidental. They are true cousins.
It seems that, since last year, the authorities have been tough on both DiDi and Lenovo. DiDi made its IPO on the NYSE last June and Beijing started to restrict it afterward. Three months later, on September 30, Lenovo filed an application to make an IPO on the Shanghai STAR market (science and technology innovation board), but withdrew it a week later. This year, on April 14, the China Security Regulatory Commission criticized Lenono for not reporting financial data on time and required it to rectify itself. Two days later, DiDi announced its plan to delist from the NYSE.
The article said it is possible that Xi Jinping is targeting the Liu family, which was the front-man for the bunch of high-ranking officials in other CCP factions. Liu Chuanzhi created his enterprise during Jiang Zemin’s time – Jiang was a former CCP head and had a fierce power fight against his successor Hu Jintao and also Hu’s successor Xi Jinping. Liu was the President of the Tai Mountain Club, a secrete association of top business elites including Alibaba’s Ma Yun, Baidu’s Li Yanhong, Huaiyi Brother’s Wang Zhongjun, and others. These people started their business before Xi becameing the top man and therefore, the political power behind them was not from Xi’s group.
DiDi was likely to have received support from these business tycoons and thus the top red powerhouse families behind them. Xi might consider them a threat and therefore started targeting DiDi and Lenovo, similarly as Alibaba and its Ant Group.
Source: Epoch Times, April 22, 2022