Bicycle sharing services are primed to be a major focus for China’s startup scene this year. Now today, only the fourth day of 2017, comes the first mega-round for the space after Mobike announced its $215 million Series D funding.

The investment is led by internet giant Tencent, which took part in previous funding, and Warburg Pincus with participation from a range of top names. Those include new (and potentially highly strategic) backers online travel giant Ctrip and Huazhu Hotels Group, which runs over 3,000 hotels in China, and existing investors Sequoia China and Hillhouse Capital. The company did not disclose its valuation.

“What we can say is that our business continues to expand rapidly and we believe we are the largest player in our market by a considerable margin,” a spokesperson said.

Mobike said it will collaborate with Huazhu Hotels and Ctrip, which recently acquired Europe-based Skycanner for $1.7 billion and has invested in a Chinese airline, to help “travellers to get around cities more easily” and grow its userbase. Tencent, it added, would help with resources and know-how.

Founded in 2015, Mobike began offering its service in Shanghai in April 2016. Today it operates in nine cities across China. It is founded on the idea that bicycles can provide a cheap, easy and environmentally-friendly way to navigate China’s urban areas and that the proliferation of smartphones should allow people to use bikes as and when they want.

Unlike government-backed bike sharing services in other pars of the world that use fixed locations to store cycles, Mobike makes use of GPS to allow its bikes to left anywhere in a city. The company’s mobile app helps locate available bikes, which can be unlocked by scanning a QR code that is present on each bike.

Previous articleThe Last Guardian’s Trico is the gaming's perfect pet and a truly smart piece of design
Next articleAirthings wants you to measure the Radon in your house