Arthur J. Villasanta – Fourth Estate Contributor
San Francisco, CA, United States (4E) – Real-time ride-sharing firm Lyft, which provides more than one million rides per day in the USA, has hired J.P. Morgan Chase to lead its multi-billion dollar initial public offering (IPO).
Its announcement of the hiring of JP Morgan Chase, the world’s most valuable bank by market cap, kicked-off an IPO scheduled for early 2019. Credit Suisse and global investment bank Jefferies Group are also involved as underwriters in a more junior capacity
Founded 2012 in San Francisco, California, Lyft in 2017 posted revenues of $1 billion but suffered a net loss of $200 million.
The second-largest U.S. ride-hailing company’s valuation could top $15 billion in equity markets, said sources with knowledge of the deal. Lyft raised $600 million in Series I funding earlier this year, giving it a value of $15.1 billion.
Lyft and Uber, the country’s top ride-hailing company, both plan to go public in 2019. Lyft will likely go public before Uber.
Both firms, however, have lost money for years because of ruinous competition and price gouging. Lyft’s losses grew to $254 million in the third quarter from $195 million year-on-year. On the other hand, revenue rose to $563 million from $300 million year-on-year.
Lyft sales got a boost in 2017 as Uber was battered by the “#deleteUber” campaign that resulted from a series of company scandals and missteps. Uber then replaced founder and CEO Travis Kalanick with Dara Khosrowshahi, who has worked hard to restore Uber’s public image.
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