Confirmed! UberChina's Former Head Liu Zhen To Join China's Largest Information Distribution Platform TouTiao

摘要: Liu Zhen, UberChina's former head of strategy, is to join ByteDance (TouTiao), one of China's largest and major information distribution platforms.

(Chinese Version)

On the afternoon of October, 24th, an insider revealed to TMTpost that Liu Zhen, UberChina’s former head of strategy, is to join ByteDance (TouTiao), one of China’s largest and major information distribution platforms. After we reported the news through our latest function “Today’s Headlines in Pictures”, heated discussion was aroused on the internet.

A few hours later, TouTiao officially confirmed the news to TMTpost, saying that “Ms. Liu will join our management team recently. It is our hope that we can build TouTiao into a leading internet and technology company in the world.” Yet, TouTiao declined to reveal the specific job title of Liu.

Judging from existing information, Liu seems to be invited by TouTiao to help extend its global operations.

Liu joined UberChina in April, 2015 and appeared in public along with other senior executives for the first time seven months later. This June, Liu was promoted to senior vice president and became the actual leader of Uber in mainland China. However, on September, 30th, a month after Didi merged UberChina, Liu decided to leave.

Liu was said to be one of the few people who have the largest contribution to UberChina. As a matter of fact, UberChina's development, from changing the name, raising financing to building a potent management team, owed much to Liu. Before Liu joined UberChina, every city had its own General Manger, and every city’s team was independent; after she restructured UberChina, its service was divided into four main regions, and General Manager in each main region has full control of city teams that fall into the region, making it a lot easier to coordinate among different city teams as well as between its headquarter and city teams.

Yet, it was also reported that although Liu contributed a great deal to UberChina’s development, she failed to win full trust from Uber Global’s founder Travis Kalanick. Some analysts noticed that in Travis Kalanick’s internal letter, her name appeared after three regional General Manger. Indeed, even if Uber didn’t find any appropriate candidate for CEO of UberChina for a long time, Travis didn’t appoint Liu as CEO.

Moreover, after saying nothing to the public within a month after UberGlobal gave up its service in China to Didi, she revealed to People Magazine in an interview that she didn’t know about the merger until the day when every other people knew and she was so sad and even cried several times the next day.

On September, 30th, Liu posted a letter via her WeChat friends circle, indicating that she was going to leave UberChina:

The other days, I went to climb a snow-capped mountain. At that time, I kept in my mind: What a pity that there are people who never bother to look up at the stars in the sky and who never savor the beauty and poetic nature of life! To all those who’ve looked up at the stars, chased them, or even tried to pick them: your stories are far from over.

Now, it seems that Liu has got over with sorrows from the last entrepreneurial experience and decided to join another startup.

By the way, it’s worth noticing that UberChina updated its APP also on October, 24th. In the description column, Uber’s developer name was changed into Xiaoju Technology (the operation entity of Didi).

More details about the job transition of other executives of UberChina: Wang Ying, former General Manager of Central China region, became head of Didi’s Uber business division. Uber’s service scale was re-divided into three main regions: Northern China, Central and Eastern China as well as Southern and Western China. Wen Yilong, former General Manager of Uber Heifei, became head of Northern China region. Jiang Long, former General Manager of Uber Suhzou, became head of Central and Eastern China regions, while Yang Mi, former head of Uber Chongqing, became head of Southern and Western China region. In addition, Zhang Yanqi, former head of Northern and Western China region, as well as Luo Gang, former head of Southern China region, decided to leave UberChina, join Didi and became head of Didi’s automobile supplies and parts business and gas station business.

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[The article is published and edited with authorization from the author @TMTpost-Chinese please note source and hyperlink when reproduce.]

Translated by Levin Feng (Senior Translator at PAGE TO PAGE), working for TMTpost.

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