China’s search engine giant Baidu and automaker Geely have hired Mobike co-founder Xia Yiping as CEO of their new electric vehicle venture, according to Reuters. The new venture aims to leverage intelligent driving capabilities and Geely’s car manufacturing expertise.
- Xia served as Mobike’s chief technology officer until the company was acquired by food delivery giant Meituan in 2018.
- Mobike and its then-chief competitor Ofo pioneered China’s bike-sharing boom, which saw them attract hundreds of millions in investment and deploy millions of bicycles across China and abroad.
- Before Mobike, Xia worked at Ford Motors and Fiat Chrysler.
- Since December, Baidu’s U.S.-listed shares have more than doubled in price when it was first reported of the search engine’s intention to produce its own EVs.
- Baidu expects to launch a new EV model in around three years.
Baidu and Geely stocks are currently declining. BIDU: NASDAQ is down 0.96% on premarket, 0175: HKG is down 2.21%