Google Parent Making Humongous Bet On Lyft


It invested in Uber in 2013, but the ride-hailing app then began to develop autonomous cars and compete directly with Alphabet's subsidiary Waymo.

The first is a September report that claimed the company, which now only operates in the United States, has held a series of talks with London officials a year ago.

Bloomberg, citing unnamed people "familiar with the matter", on Thursday reported that Alphabet has been talking with Lyft in recent weeks about making a "potential investment" in the rideshare company. Uber began heavily recruiting Google employees for a number of divisions within the company and Google chief legal officer David Drummond stepped down from Uber's board a year ago as the two companies began racing to develop autonomous vehicle technology. CapitalG Partner David Lawee will join Lyft's board.

Lyft raised $1 billion in a deal that values the ride-sharing startup at $11 billion, steps up competition with rival Uber Technologies and builds ties with internet giant Alphabet Inc.

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Lyft is now valued at $11 billion. But what was a promising partnership quickly turned rocky as Uber and Google became ostensible competitors in the self-driving and transportation spaces.

Lyft has been expanding in the United States market as Uber's image has taken a hit in recent months.

Initially, Alphabet teamed up with Uber. SoftBank invested in Alibaba. But this year, Lyft has closed the valuation and market-share gap. The latter company ranks as the largest privately-held firm in the world with a valuation of $68 billion.

What's also interesting about this deal is that CapitalG was a backer for Uber early on in the company's life.