On May 10, Chinese Internet giant Baidu announced that former CEO of Shouqi Limousine & Chauffeur Wei Dong has joined Baidu as Vice President and Chief Safe Operation Officer of Baidu’s Intelligent Driving Group (IDG).
According to Baidu, Wei Dong, the former CEO of Shouqi Limousine & Chauffeur, one of the most well-known ride-hailing providers in China, will lead the commercial operation of Baidu's Apollo Robotaxi service and help deploy and commercialize its autonomous driving field.
Wei Dong is an expert in the field of transportation. He is also the ex-vice-president of the Chinese car rental company, CAR. In 2014, Wei Dong joined Shouqi Group, served as CEO of Shouqi Limousine & Chauffeur, Shouqi GoFun, and Shouqi Car Rental. As the founder of Shouqi Car Rental, Wei Dong led the operation and completed six rounds of funding, worth CNY 2 billion, with Baidu as one of its investors.
On May 2, Baidu Apollo Robotaxi – the first batch of 'shared driverless vehicles' in China – officially began to operate in Beijing Shougang park. During the International workers' Day holiday, Baidu Apollo's paid service of the unmanned vehicles accumulated 848 orders and drove 1500 passengers to their destination.
As the first internet enterprise to deploy in the autonomous driving field in China, Baidu has proposed to deploy 3000 Robotaxis in 30 cities to serve more than 3 million people within the next three years. With Wei Dong's entry, Baidu will further accelerate Baidu Apollo's business scale deployment and commercial operation and reduce the operation cost to start to make profits from the business.