Chinese bike-sharing firm goes bust after it loses most of its cycles in just five months

Oliver Gill
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Bike-sharing is very popular in China, although parking them is understood to be a nightmare (Source: Getty)

A Chinese bike-sharing company has gone bust after losing nearly all of its bikes in its first five months of business.

Wukong Bikes said 90 per cent of its 1,200 cycles had gone astray. And because, unlike many competitors, it had not fitted them with GPS systems, the firm had no idea where they had gone.

Read more: This bike-sharing startup just raised $600m from Tencent

The company, based in south-western city Chongqing, revealed last week it was ceasing its services from June and withdrawing from the industry.

Bike-sharing is a flourishing industry in China in particular. Two of the biggest players in the market, Mobike and Ofo, launched their first batches of shared bikes in Shanghai last year.

But the failure of Wukong is understood to be the first business failure in the sector.

Last week, Mobike secured a $600m (£470m) investment from, among others, Chinese tech giant Tencent.

Sequia Capital, TPG and Hillhouse Capital were also part of Mobike's funding round, which will help to fund investment into Internet of Things and artificial intelligence technology. The firm has 100m users, who take around 25m rides each day across 100 cities.

Read more: This startup wants to get more Londoners on their bikes

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