August 11, 2015 / 9:28 AM / 4 years ago

China car services firm Tuhu raises $100 mln from Joy Capital, Welkin

HONG KONG, Aug 11 (Reuters) - Tuhu, a Chinese online platform for automobile services and products, said on Tuesday it raised about $100 million from a group of investors including venture capital firm Joy Capital, looking to expand its distribution network and warehouses.

Joy Capital, whose founders include the former head of telecommunications investments at Legend Capital, led the funding round, Tuhu Founder and Chief Executive Min Chen said.

Other investors included private equity firm Welkin, leasing company Far East Horizon Ltd and existing Tuhu investors such as Legend Capital and Qiming Venture Partners.

Companies like Tuhu that help link mobile Internet users to nearby offline services have seen a surge in investments as companies from China’s biggest Internet search engine Baidu Inc to ecommerce giant Alibaba Group Holding Ltd look to expand into so-called online-to-offline (O2O) businesses.

“We do see huge opportunities for the development of the O2O market. In mainland China now we are just at the initial stage, taking off,” Chen said.

Tuhu’s clients can buy tyres and other accessories, as well as book a car wash at one of its 6,500 store partners through the company’s website or mobile app and call centre.

China Renaissance advised Tuhu on the deal, Chen added. (Reporting by Elzio Barreto; Editing by Gopakumar Warrier)

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