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China's Manbang to open platform to foreigner freight users

By Cheng Yu in Guiyang | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2019-05-26 20:16

China's Uber-like freight service provider Manbang group said on Sunday that it will open its platform with huge transportation big data to foreign freight users, as it steps up investment to maximize the power of big data to improve logistics efficiency.

"Manbang will open its intelligent dispatch and trading systems to freight users both at home and abroad, as well as third-party logistics firms and parks," said Xu Qiang, vice-president of Manbang.

"More efforts will be made this year to transform the company from simply matching empty trucks with loads to leveraging data to enable the whole logistics ecosystem," he said.

Xu made the remarks at the China International Big Data Industry Expo 2019, which kicked off in Guiyang, southwest China's Guizhou province.

After the company's latest $1.9 billion financing last year, Xu noted that Manbang's total users have exceeded 8.1 million, with its services available in 339 cities across China.

Manbang Group, which was created last November after China's top two truck-calling apps Huochebang and Yunmanman merged, is one of the top unicorn companies in the Chinese logistics industry, according to the Hurun China Unicorn Index.

"We also will step up AI investment to accelerate the application of the forefront technology in the company's platforms and systems, including autonomous driving," Xu said.

The Guiyang-based company has signed an exclusive strategic partnership agreement with PlusAI, a startup focusing on driverless cargo vehicles, to cooperate on high-definition map data collection and large-scale driverless commercial fleets.

Xu said that the two sides already have worked a Level 4 truck fleet by partnering with FAW Group, a leading Chinese heavy truck equipment manufacturer, and the United States-based chipmaker Nvidia Corp.

PlusAI also has obtained a license to conduct road tests for self-driving commercial freight trucks in Changzhou and East China's Jiangsu province, he added.

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