Lyft files for stock offering, beating Uber to Wall Street

San Francisco (AFP) –


Lyft on Friday filed documents for its stock offering, beating rival ride-sharing group Uber for a Wall Street listing and becoming one of the most prominent venture-backed tech firms to hit public markets in recent years.

"We are laser-focused on revolutionizing transportation and continue to lead the market in innovation," Lyft said in its filing, setting a preliminary target of raising $100 million.

The documents offering the first glimpse of Lyft's finances and showed the California firm lost $911 million on $2.2 billion in 2018 revenues.

Lyft's private valuation has been estimated at $15 billion, considerably smaller than Uber but one of the largest startups worth more than $1 billion, popularly known as "unicorns."

Some reports say the firm, to be traded on the Nasdaq under the symbol LYFT, will seek a valuation of more than $20 billion. Lyft has discussed the possibility of expanding globally but so far has operated only in the US and Canada.

The filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission said only that "we may continue to expand our international operations," without any specifics.

The document said Lyft had completed over one billion rides since its inception in 2012 and had bookings last year of $8.1 billion.

Lyft's mission, according to the statement, revolves around reducing the number of cars on roads, and includes a path toward self-driving vehicles.

"We believe that cities should be built for people, not cars," the company said. "Mass car ownership strains our cities and reduces the very freedom that cars once provided."

Lyft said it is also investing in autonomous technology and hopes to roll out more self-driving vehicles.

"We believe that the strength of our brand, our trusted relationships with riders and our expertise in operating a ridesharing network at scale, as well as our two-pronged strategy to bring autonomous vehicles to market, will be competitive advantages that will enable us to capture value in the emerging autonomous vehicle ecosystem," the statement said.