Lyft Prices I.P.O. at $72 a Share, Marking Arrival of Gig Economy to Wall Street

Lyft Prices I.P.O. at $72 a Share, Marking Arrival of Gig Economy to Wall Street

Lyft was not the first ride-hailing company. But it is poised to become the first publicly traded one, and investors’ appetite for its shares proved enormous.

The company priced its shares at $72 each on Thursday, after raising its price range amid significant demand from prospective shareholders, according to two people familiar with the offering. That puts Lyft’s value at $24.3 billion as it prepares to begin trading on the Nasdaq stock market on Friday, under the ticker symbol “LYFT.”

The offering marks the arrival of a new generation of Silicon Valley darlings on the public markets. Many of the companies promised new business models, upended established industries such as transportation and triggered a chain effect on how people work and make a living. The public offerings cement their place in people’s lives, promise millions of dollars in investment gains for their longtime backers and are set to unleash a new wave of wealth in the tech industry.

In its offering prospectus, Lyft recently revealed that it lost close to $1 billion in 2018. Lyft and Uber regularly lose money in their competition to win new markets, where they spend amply on subsidies for riders and drivers. The companies also burn cash on other transportation initiatives, like bikes, scooters and autonomous vehicles. Last year, Lyft bought the largest bike-sharing company in the United States for around $250 million.

At its I.P.O. price, Lyft’s valuation puts it within range of old-line auto companies like Ford Motor. It is a significant increase from the $15.1 billion that Lyft earned in its last private fund-raising round last year.

Source link