Lyft beats Uber to the public market as expected

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Lyft's net loss reached $911 million last year, and its filing notes "we have incurred net losses each year since our inception and we may not be able to achieve or maintain profitability in the future". Lyft said that as of December it held 39 percent of the USA ride-hailing market, up from 22 percent at the end of 2016. The document said Lyft had completed over one billion rides since its inception in 2012 and had bookings a year ago 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.

Lyft will offer cash bonuses of up to $10,000 to some of its most active drivers with the option to purchase shares in the IPO, a bid to improve relations with drivers.

Lyft has filed its S-1 form with the Securities and Exchange Commission to go public later this year and the document is filled with insight into the second-largest ridesharing company in the nation.

For example, drivers with more than 20,000 rides by February 25, 2019, will receive up to $10,000.

"We are one of only two companies that have established a TaaS [transportation as a service] network at scale across the United States", Lyft said.

Lyft is now valued at $15bn, just seven years after it was founded by technology entrepreneurs John Zimmer and Logan Green. Assuming steady revenue growth, experts say Lyft could be valued at as much as $25 billion by next year.

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Lyft's public roadshow in which underwriters pitch the IPO to potential investors is expected to begin the week of March 18, a person familiar with the matter has said. When Uber goes public later this year, the company could be valued at $120 billion.

The companies may announce a cash-and-shares transaction that values Careem at about US$3 billion in the coming weeks, the people said, asking not to be identified because the talks are private.

As a private company, Lyft raised almost $5 billion from investors.

Uber is also having regulatory issues, related to the fact that Uber is available in around 70 countries across the globe, while Lyft is focused on the USA and Canada, having a narrowly determined targeted audience and having to deal with a leaner business model in oppose to Uber.

Lyft calls these special market conditions "Prime Time", where 50% premiums are added to the price of rides-i.e., a $6 ride would cost $9 during Prime Time-and alerts drivers during major holidays, promotions, and events in certain markets if the company can guarantee Prime Time rates. Hussain said that the median valuation of a tech IPO in 2008 was only $106 million while Uber and Lyft have a combined valuation of more than $100 billion. And Lyft recently achieved 40% market share in the USA, up from 35% previous year - meaning it took away market share from Uber.

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