Chinese powerhouse Didi Chuxing’s acquisition of Uber Technologies Inc’s China operations marked the biggest move yet toward consolidation in an industry that many investors and Silicon Valley pundits view as a winner-take-all game.
On the day the Didi deal was announced earlier this month, Uber board member Bill Gurley said Uber’s rivals in other markets had a slim chance of splitting the market with the dominant player, just as Uber struggled to erode Didi’s share in China.
After China, the industry will consolidate in other markets, said Hans Tung, an Asia-focused investor and managing partner at GGV Capital, which backed Didi and Grab, a Singapore-based ride service. “There will be a dominant No. 1,” he said that same day.
The consensus of 11 economists interviewed by Reuters, however, suggests an entirely different scenario, one of perpetual competition in a business with relatively few barriers to entry.