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Lyft reportedly raising hundreds of millions to compete with Uber's massive cash pile

Lyft reportedly raising hundreds of millions to compete with Uber's massive cash pile


The number two player in the car-hailing industry is trying to go pro

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It appears Lyft is about to raise some money, although there are conflicting reports about how much. According to a report in the New York Post, Lyft is in the process of raising a $500 million round of funding that would value the company at $2 billion dollars. According to the New York Times, however, that round is closer to $250 million. Either way, that is a far cry from its major rival, Uber, which has raised just under $5 billion and is valued at at least $40 billion. But with Lyft's revenue growing reportedly growing at 40 percent quarter over quarter, there is clearly room in the market for more than one player.

Uber CEO, Travis Kalanick, has spoken openly about his efforts to prevent Lyft from raising money. Venture capital investors are loathe to fund the second place finisher. But we still live in a world full of taxis, car services, and rental cars that don't interact with our modern universe of smartphones and mobile apps. Lyft is currently in around 70 US cities. Uber by contrast is in 54 countries; there are a lot of blank spots on this march towards global domination.

Uber has talked openly about trying to screw Lyft out of funding

Lyft began as a way for people to offer free rides. There were no fares, only optional suggested tips. This is still the case in many Lyft cities. But it has also tried to grow over time into a more aggressive business. In most cities it now charges a set fare. Recently it tried to upgrade to a more professional look. It has long been known for the fuzzy pink mustaches attached to its cars. That will now be replaced with a much subtler plastic "glowstache." See, a glowstache is very suit and tie.

Update, 5:48PM EST: Updated with information from the New York Times report.