Didi Poaching Uber Execs in Mexico

(Preet) #1

One of Ubers strongest presences is felt in Mexico just south of the border from Uber's HQ in San Francisco, is where the new rideshare war is about to take place. Even though Didi and Uber share the same investor (SoftBank), and both have directors on each other's executive board, they are still bitter rivals in the quest for world domination.

Mexico is one of Uber's success stories and an extremely lucrative market. Didi is attacking Uber where it really hurts; they are poaching Uber's executive team in Mexico. Not only are they setting up sites around the country, but they also intend to introduce a whole supplement of services that are not limited to just car ridesharing.

Didi also has a great advantage over Uber; they have deeper pockets as well as a stronger and more lucrative source of income, China, which is currently a Didi Monopoly.

Many see Didi as being a Chinese dragon, where you will lose in a war against it. However, in the instance of Mexico, there is a slight difference, it is closer to home for Uber and is already an Uber ground. Didi has already poached Brazil and owns 99; it is now posing to take over Mexico, and thereby hopes to invade Latin and South America for itself.

Didi had won in its first battle with Uber when it bought out Uber's operations in China back in 2016. Didi has won the second battle, in that it managed to adapt itself to different country styles, something that Uber had a problem doing due to the rigid worldview that Kalanick imposed. That is why Didi is in Japan, partnering with SoftBank and Tokyo Taxi.


Uber is still the most powerful rideshare presence in Latin America, where Mexico and Brazil are the biggest markets, Mexico being Uber's and Brazil being Didi's success stories. Didi wants to control both markets and want sot to get Uber out of Brazil as well as Mexico. I guess that Didi is used to be a monopoly, so it has a psychological disadvantage when facing mixed competitive markets. It's a win all or die approach.

The big difference in Didi's plan on Mexico is that it has no local company to buy out, they have to start from the ground up. In this instance, Uber has the advantage, and the war is now on. This is why Didi intends to poach as much of Uber's management talent first. Interestingly enough, the GM for Didi in Mexico is Uber's previous GM in China, Lin Ma. Ma has enough experience working for both companies, so he is in the best position for Didi. Taking advantage of how both companies think as well as understanding rideshare operations from the ground up.

So far, Didi has yet to build up a team of drivers, and there is still confusion as to where Didi will strike first. Didi is using a special algorithm it has developed to enhance safe driving as well as efficient pickup times. It intends to introduce these new factors in their competition for market dominance, taking the competition away from just a pricing war.

Didi intends to instigate a credit only fee, taking away the insecurity of cash from their drivers. Once criminals know that Didi drivers have no cash, they will become less of a target for street crimes. This is one of Uber's biggest issues, but it is also one of Mexico's largest markets since a large percentage of the population has no bank account and relies heavily on cash.

Didi will also introduce motorbikes, bicycles, scooters and minivan rides in the future.

(Steve Mann) #2

I wish they would poach drivers in the US, with a 100% bonus for 2 years!

(Ian) #3

One of the most acceptable ways for hiring talent is through head hunting and poaching talent from the competition. This is acceptable, and if Uber is not willing to lose all of its talent to Didi then they should consider offering incentives to keep them employed.