International Business: Lyft seeks to raise some $2 bn in IPO

Mae Love
March 20, 2019

Uber is hoping its larger ride-hailing service will justify a market value as high as $120 billion after its IPO is completed later this spring, according to the Wall Street Journal.

The No. 2 USA ride-hailing company could spell out the price range and number of shares it plans to market in an updated regulatory filing, said the people, who asked not to be identified as the details aren't public.

Uber archrival Lyft hopes to raise as much as $2.1 billion in its IPO later this year.

The market rally of the last few years, however, coupled with the desire of some of the startups' insiders to cash out, is leading many technology firms, including Airbnb Inc, Slack Technologies Inc and Stripe Inc, to plan market debuts. Going public could impact how Lyft operates: It could, for instance, drop its rider and driver subsidies if it reckons Uber may do the same (partly why both companies have yet to turn a profit). Reuters first reported the details a day earlier, citing people familiar with the matter.

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The company has lost almost US$3 billion since 2012, but has brought in more than $5 billion in venture capital. Lyft warned in its filing that expenses are likely to increase and that it may not be able to "achieve or maintain profitability in the future".

The filing also sheds light on how much control Lyft's cofounders, Logan Green and John Zimmer, will have after the IPO.

According to the Financial Times report released on Saturday (March 16th), a rebellious investors' group had sent a letter to the Lyft director, saying that they should stick to a conventional single class of shares with one vote each per share. Lyft has applied to list shares on the Nasdaq Global Market under the symbol "LYFT".

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