Didi, the Chinese transportation behemoth that acquired Brazilian ride-hailing service 99 back in January, has replaced 99’s chief executive with one of its own, Recode first reported.
Stepping in to replace Peter Fernandez is Tony Qiu, who most recently oversaw Didi’s luxury business. Before joining Didi, Qiu had stints at Morgan Stanley and Bain Capital. Fernandez will remain on board as a strategic advisor for 99.
“99 stands at an extraordinary moment for future growth,” Qiu said in a press release. “Our 99 team has unrivaled commitment and experience in serving local communities and their transportation needs. With the solid support and resources of DiDi, we will continue to innovate and improve the lives of millions of Brazilians with faster, safer and more affordable transportation options.”
99’s head of policy, legal and communications, Matheus Moraes, will also become president of 99 to oversee the service’s daily operations. This leadership change comes just a couple of days after Didi launched its ride-hailing service in Mexico. As TechCrunch’s Jon Russell noted, Mexico is Didi’s first organic expansion into other markets. In Brazil, Didi acquired 99 and in Taiwan, Didi used a franchise-based model.
Prior to becoming chief executive at 99, Fernandez served as the company’s chief product officer for nearly one year. He had previously spent about five years at Google, where he was head of YouTube and, at one point, head of mobile and social for Latin America.