SHANGHAI, May 8 (Xinhua) -- China's 120-year-old bike manufacturer Phoenix is to supply bike-sharing startup Ofo and help it explore overseas markets.
In the following year, Ofo will buy at least 5 million bikes from Shanghai-based Phoenix and put them on the streets of Beijing, Shanghai and neighboring areas, the manufacturer announced Monday at a ceremony celebrating its 120th anniversary.
In addition, Phoenix plans to produce various versions of bikes for Ofo based on overseas demand.
All the Phoenix-made bikes for Ofo will bear the Phoenix trademark.
Phoenix bikes have been sold in more than 90 countries and regions, with overseas sales accounting for 40 percent of the brand's total.
The two companies will also set up a research and development center and a quality management center to serve the eastern China market.
The bike-sharing business, which took off in big Chinese cities less than two years ago, allows riders to hire bikes for as little as one yuan (about 15 U.S. cents) per hour via a mobile app and drop them off anywhere for the next user.
There were 18.9 million users of shared bicycles nationwide in 2016. The number is expected to hit 50 million by the end of 2017.