Uber may have ushered in the ride-sharing craze, but companies like Lyft are quickly taking advantage of the hot market.
Seeking to raise even more capital, both Lyft and Uber are working with private investors to secure some incredible sums. Lyft is seeking $500 million in additional funding while Uber is in the market for a cool billion.
Fundraising for Billion Dollar Startups
Luckily, fundraising for technology start-ups is still aggressive, so both Uber and Lyft have little to worry about, according to CB Insights, a venture investment tracking firm, as reported in the New York Times. So far, the two ride-sharing companies seem to be unstoppable as their business models grow out of control.
“We are here to reimagine and reinvent how people use cars,” John Zimmer, president of Lyft, told an audience at the Los Angeles Auto Show. “Change is happening faster than expected and continues to accelerate.”
Uber is Everywhere
Uber, founded in 2009, is currently valued at $60 to $70 billion. It’s available in 300 cities across 65 countries and hosts more than 1.1 million drivers on its platform. It allows users to car-pool or request private rides from other users for a percentage of the fare. UberPool, the car-pooling segment of Uber, currently accounts for nearly half of the Uber rides shared in San Francisco alone.
Lyft, founded in 2012, is currently valued between $2.5 and $4 billion. Like Uber, its goal is to match passengers with drivers in more than 190 US cities. Recently, the company has teamed with a similar service in China, Didi Kuaidi, to help extend the same convenience to Chinese users visiting America.
People Aren’t the Only Ones Riding
As Uber expands its reach, it’s adding additional driver-related services. Food and retail delivery are definitely in the works — Uber is currently testing those waters in select cities. The hope is to speed up citywide delivery even more, allowing companies to achieve Amazon-like speed without the same level of infrastructure investment.
Both companies dream of a new way to use cars — especially in cities where cars are more of a plague than a pleasure. By sharing rides, helping out with deliveries and so forth, Uber and Lyft drivers will not only continue to increase their bottom line, but may also reduce both private traffic pressure and overcrowding on public transit.