Will Alphabet Invest $1B in Ride-Hailing Provider Lyft?

Sep 16, 2017, 00:32
Will Alphabet Invest $1B in Ride-Hailing Provider Lyft?

Alphabet could put the investment under CapitalG, an investment arm, or Google itself. Lyft is the most despised adversary of Uber, which is associated with a progressing legitimate tussle with Waymo; in this way, it bodes well for Alphabet to put resources into Lyft. Waymo alleged in February that Uber had stolen trade secrets from it when former Google engineer Anthony Levandowski left the firm to join the ride-hailing company.

A potential $1 billion investment in Lyft Inc. would mark a new direction in Google's ride sharing strategy. Then in May, Waymo teamed up with Lyft to work on developing self-driving technology.

It also underscores just how much the relationship between Google and Uber has deteriorated in recent months. The round valued the company at $7.5 billion, up from $5.5 billion at Lyft's previous financing more than a year earlier. Lyft was in informal talks with Alphabet along with other possible suitors in 2016 but a sale was not pursued. They plan to bring autonomous vehicle technology into the mainstream through pilot projects and product-development efforts.

Meanwhile, SoftBank reportedly is in talks to invest as much as $10 billion in Uber - a deal that has been rumored to be in the works for weeks, but which threatens to lower Uber's almost $70 billion valuation. Either way, this can't be good news for Uber. Lyft and Alphabet both declined to make any official comment about the matter.

As CNET reports, Lyft has always been the underdog in the ride-sharing space, but has been making steady gains on its biggest competition.

Among ride-sharing startups, Lyft has raised the fourth-largest amount of capital, according to CB Insights, with about $2.5 billion raised at a valuation of $6.9 billion.

In San Francisco, the company has expanded its shuttle service with a total eight routes, and it has six sroutes in Chicago.