Top 5 most popular online-to-offline apps in China
More than 600 million Chinese internet users fuelled a two trillion yuan information service and e-commerce market in 2014, according to the Internet Society of China. In March, the government put forward its 'Internet Plus' strategy to promote the blooming online services market, and many new apps have emerged focusing on online-to-offline (O2O) business.
SCMP staff reporters have tested some of the most popular Chinese O2O apps. Their inclusion is based on functionality, convenience, time saving qualities, business scale, and popularity with users.
Ele Me / You Hungry: Food delivery
Founded in 2013, the app now covers more than 180,000 restaurants in 200 Chinese cities with more than 10 million users and over one million daily food orders. As well as independent restaurants, the app also covers fast-food outlets including KFC and Subway. The company raised more than US$500 million in funding in 2015.
Heli Jia / Beaver Home: Facial and nail beauty services
Founded in 2013, more than 2,000 nail artists and hundreds of stylists in six major Chinese cities – Shanghai, Beijing, Shenzhen, Guangzhou, Hangzhou and Chengdu – have signed on to serve hundreds of thousands of Chinese women who want their nail, hair and facial treatments done at home instead of trekking to beauty salons. The company raised US$50 million in financing in 2015.
Gongfu Xiong / Kung-fu Bear: Home massage service
Founded in 2014, the app includes several hundred massage therapists in Shanghai, Beijing and Guangzhou providing on-demand Chinese massages for shoulder and back pain. The company finished two rounds of financing worth millions of dollars in just two months.
Aapin Che / All Apart Carpool
Founded in 2011, the app now covers more than 200 Chinese cities with 10 million users. Similar to US-based Lyft, it encourages drivers to network with each other and fill their empty seats, reducing the numbers of cars on the road and easing traffic congestion. The company raised US$4.8 million in its most recent funding round.
Genshuixue / Learn From Whom: Tutoring
Founded in 2014, the app has signed up more than 70,000 registered teachers in major Chinese cities to tutor students from all grades on foreign languages, sports, art, cooking and even magic. The company broke records in raising US$50 million dollars in its series A financing round in 2015.