Meituan-Dianping merger to form 020 powerhouse

Scorching competition in the online-to-offline sector motivated the former rivals to agree to the merger, creating a Chinese O2O heavyweight capable of taking on Baidu's Nuomi.

Two large Chinese tech startups Meituan and Dianping have agreed to a merger, forming the country’s largest online-to-offline O2O platform and presenting a formidable obstacle for would-be competitors in the hotly contested sector, according to two sources familiar with the matter.

The alliance between Meituan.com, a Groupon-like lifestyle platform partly owned by Chinese Internet giant Alibaba, and Tencent-backed restaurant-review website Dianping.com will be officially announced as early as Thursday, one source told FinanceAsia.

A second source said former rivals Meituan and Dianping will likely set up a new offshore entity with respective 60% and 40% ownership stakes. He added the new firm will...

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