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US-based ride sharing venture Lyft raises $530M in Series E from Rakuten, others

VCCircle_lyft_LogoUS-based Lyft Inc which owns and operates ride hailing startup lyft.com has raised $530 million in a Series E round of funding led by Japanese e-commerce giant Rakuten. The fund will be used for deepening its US footprint, innovating features and team expansion.

"We will deepen our presence in the 65 markets where we operate, and expand into new cities. Similar to the early days of building out wireless networks, we will lay the groundwork for critical American infrastructure as we transform the $2.25 trillion US personal transportation market," the company said in a statement.

While there is no official confirmation, multiple media reports said that Rakuten invested $300 million of the total amount for 11.9 percent stake in the company.

With this the total cash raised by the company gets more than $850 million and the latest deal values it at around $2.5 billion.

Lyft

There also was no official statement if all the existing investors including Coatue Management, Alibaba, Daniel Loeb's Third Point, Andreessen Horowitz, Founders Fund and Mayfield Ventures, participated in this round.

Lyft has been mulling to break into Europe for a while and reports suggest it may also look at Asia.

Rocket Internet-backed Brazilian venture Tripda, which offers inter-city ride sharing, is already present in India, having launched a few months ago. There are no big players in the intra-city ride sharing segment as of now in the country.

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