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With mass firing, Chinese bike-sharing startup Ofo is halting operations in India


After creating a sensation in the Indian market, Beijing-based bicycle sharing company Ofo is reportedly winding up its operations in India. The company launched its operation in the country in November last year and since then it diversified its business in many cities including Chennai, Indore, Ahmedabad, and Pune.

According to a Technode report, the Alibaba-backed company has fired a majority of its employee working for India operations. It further added that Ofo has now stopped operating in all cities but except Pune where it partnered with Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) to support the Pune Cycle Plan.

In June, a member of Ofo’s senior management informed Indian managers that he would be visiting to discuss the company’s roadmap in the region. It also claimed that the Indian employees were then informed that they would be required to leave.

Ofo had promised these employees that it would discuss an operational roadmap for the next few years. However, these things never happened and the employees were not given the option before being fired to relocate to other areas in which Ofo operates.

The mass lay off comes amidst rumour of company’s going under cash crunch and its failure in maintaining overseas operations. For Ofo, India was a crucial market where it reported decent results since launch.

The company claimed to have completed 1.1 million rides within four months of operations in the country.

To bolster its operations, the dockless bike service had partnered with payments major Paytm to offer digital payments option.

Without giving many details on the mass sacking of employees, an Ofo spokesperson said that “Our focus now is on our priority markets and moving towards profitability. We are communicating with our local markets about our plans moving forward.”

Entrackr had reached out to Ofo regarding the development, however, we didn’t receive any comment from the company until the publication of this post.

Of late, the company has been in headlines for mass firing in Singapore and local market China. Ofo, however, had declined the reports and called it rumours for defaming the company.

The development also raises alarm to other Chinese bikes sharing platform such as Mobike which is planning to enter India.

Meanwhile, these bike sharing Unicorns have been witnessing peoples disregard for creating a ruckus in the local market (China). Some media reports claimed that these companies are now oversupplying which creates a huge pile of unused bicycles across public places.

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