Lyft targets the mid-west region to extend its ridesharing operation

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The second largest ridesharing operator in the United States is the Lyft and it has its business operating only in the US. Though it is a startup company, it is considered as one of the powerful rivals for the ridesharing giant Uber.

Ridesharing aggregator in talks with investors

As a step to expand their business in the country, the taxi dispatch company is seeking new funds from the investors. The company now values 5.5 billion dollars according to the last investment offered by the General Motors. The ridesharing company has partnered with the automaker in building the self-driving cars similar to that of the Uber’s autonomous cars and in that process, the automaker has poured one billion dollars.

From the new fund rising, the ridesharing is expecting to raise its value that will make the round valuation to six billion to seven billion dollars. Earlier in August, the taxi dispatch company had talks with many leading operators like Didi Chuxing, General Motors, Uber, Amazon, Google, and Apple, however, the ridesharing company did not agree with the price proposed by the buyers.

But for the past few months, the ridesharing company is facing positive results for its brand in the local market, while the ridesharing competitor is under a pool of controversies. Lyft’s mobile application has ranked to the top list in the Apple’s App Store and it also dominated one million dollars to the local union – American Civil Liberties Union.

It is part of expansion

The plans for the funding are a part of the process to expand its service and it was informed that the ridesharing company has already launched its service in one hundred new markets in the United States. According to the company, last year their drivers have put back about seven hundred and fifty million dollars in the local market and they have even reduced the travelling time by twenty-six million hours and according to last year’s report, the drivers have received 1.5 billion dollars  in their earnings along with the  one hundred million dollars in tip.

The ridesharing company is planning to reach a potential position in the United States opposite the ridesharing giant. Though both the companies are ridesharing operators, the way in which they run their business is entirely different, where Lyft focuses on its drivers to make sure that they have a pleasant experience while driving the ride and are making enough money. Even when the company does not have many investments or market availability, there are chances for the company to position a top rank in the transportation industry.

The company has a strong perspective on raising its funding because the company has raised two billion dollars in 9 rounds of the venture funding program across with the list of participants like the Icahn Enterprise, fbFund, K9 Ventures, Andreessen Horowitz, General Motors, Floodgate, Alibaba, Rakuten, Founders Fund and the Mayfield Fund. The ridesharing company hired a company that helps in meeting potential investors- the Qatalyst Partners LP is a leading company that helps in finding best investors for the companies.

Expansion in the Midwest of the US

The company earlier in a meeting on February 23rd, 2017 announced that they have plans to expand in fifty-four cities in the United States that includes Waterloo, Sioux City, Cedar Rapids, Ames, Davenport, Des Moines and the Iowa City.

Expansion of the company in the Iowa City is not officially announced; however it is the only talk of the town right now. An article in the Des Moines Register said that the ridesharing company might take some time to expand in the Iowa City.

The Department of Transportation of the city commented on the article released by the daily and the spokesperson of the transport department, Andrea Henry said that the ridesharing company is in talks with the Department and that the company is working on the registration process and the necessary documentation for the submittal, because the ridesharing company cannot offer the service in the state unless the Lyft’s registration process is completed.

The ridesharing company also shared its view on its official website. In its comment, they have stated that the service of the company and the state matches. The ridesharing app connects with the drivers in the city instantly just by the tap of the button. Within two years of its service, the ridesharing company has set up its operation in hundred cities and is also with plans to expand to a greater extent.

Regulation for taxi dispatch operators

In 2016, the Iowa Legislature had imposed a new set of regulations for the taxi dispatch companies. According to the new regulation, the companies must follow strict background verification and license and the drivers must have the insurance liability for their vehicles. Though the administrative rules are not completely furnished, the ridesharing company must still produce the required documentations and papers that will allow the service to operate under the provisional authority.

Earlier in February, Lyft had solicited the drivers in the Des Moines and the riders can use the service by downloading the Lyft mobile application. The riders can rate the drivers and also pay for the trip using the mobile app. Uber had initially operated its service in many parts of the United States including the Iowa City and the Des Moines, by faced several regulation issues from the local taxi industry, city officials and the city finally revised the regulations for the taxi dispatch companies.

Apart from the Iowa state, the ridesharing service plans to operate in few other states like Florida, Virginia, Massachusetts, Texas, Illinois, North Dakota, Kansas, Michigan, Indiana, West Virginia, Georgia, Wisconsin, Alabama, Minnesota, and Ohio.

Uber’s tailspin of dark publicity

The ridesharing giant’s negative impression in the public forum is an added advantage for the Lyft ridesharing service to establish its operation in other states and expand its business. Uber faced the most backlashes in the recent incident with its response to the President Donald Trump’s immigration ban that led to the #DeleteUber that is moving viral on the social media network. Apart from this, the sexual harassment case of former engineer that showcased the toxic work culture to the limelight that caused many of the customers to remove their account from the company is some of the examples of the current status of the ridesharing giant.

Lyft is the second largest online ridesharing transportation network in the United States, while Uber has global standards- Lyft is the company’s most competitive rival in the US. The company has its headquarters in SF in California and it uses the mobile application software to develop, market and operates its service and the riders can also use the mobile application to book the rides and make payment.

The mobile app gives the drivers and the riders the facility to rate each other at the end of the ride. The service also allows the drivers to earn money from the food delivery service and hailing the passengers. The drivers are given loans to buy cars or they can even rent cars and work for the Lyft ridesharing service. The Lyft service was started in 2012 by Logan Green and John Zimmer.

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Author Bio

Anand Rajendran is a marketing professional with eight years of experience. He is currently working with a number of companies in the field of digital marketing, closely collaborating with a couple of e-commerce companies like Zoplay and Dectar. Zoplay deals with all Uber for x applications which sells uber for x softwares.

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