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Didi Chuxing and SoftBank team up for ride-hailing in Japan

Tim Maytom

Chinese ride-hailing firm Didi Chuxing and Japanese technology giant SoftBank have announced a strategic partnership that will aim to provide platform services for the taxi industry in Japan, with trial services set to commence in cities including Osaka, Kyoto, Fukuoka and Tokyo before the end of the year.

The partnership will utilise Didi Chuxing's AI technology to build ride-hailing platforms that enhance efficiency for both operators and drivers, and will also see the two companies setting up a joint venture in Japan to manage the platform.

Taxi services in Japan are known for high standards of quality, but both partners believe that they can help further optimise services and increase passenger convenience. The partnership will combine Didi Chuxing's deep learning-based demand prediction and smart dispatch systems with SoftBank's local resources and expertise, and will aim to actively engage with industy practitioners, policymakers and other stakeholders to build an "open and inclusive platform that will be available to all of Japan's taxi operators," according to a spokesperson for Didi Chuxing.