Apple made an unusually large investment of $1 billion into Didi Chuxing, a ride-hailing giant best understood as the “Uber of China,” earlier this year.
At the time, Apple officials, including CEO Tim Cook, said the investment would help Apple better understand the Chinese market, and would deliver a strong return on capital.
It turns out Apple got one other thing from the deal: a seat on Didi Chuxing’s board. Adrian Perica, Apple’s vice president in charge of M&A, has joined Didi Chuxing’s board, according to a report from The Information.
He joins representatives from other investors on Didi’s board, including representatives from Tencent and Alibaba.
Earlier this year, a Didi spokesperson had said that Apple would not be joining Didi’s board of directors, Dan Primack reported.
Apple’s investment in Didi has been seen as a way to placate Chinese regulators who are often defensive towards foreign technology companies.
But the tie-up is also closely watched because Apple is working on a self-driving car and some believe that the investment in Didi could develop into a future partnership centered around emerging car technology.