Lyft launches first step to take company public

Lyft says it is taking the first step toward a stock offering of the ride-hailing Uber rival (AFP pic)

WASHINGTON: Ride-hailing firm Lyft on Thursday launched the process to take the company public with a stock offering.

However, Lyft — whose main competitor Uber also wants to enter the stock market — has not released any details on the initial sales price or the number of shares to be offered, since the document filed with regulators was confidential.

The IPO will take place once the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has reviewed the sealed documents.

According to the Wall Street Journal, the IPO of the company that is currently valued at just over US$15 billion, could take place in the first half of 2019.

Lyft and Uber, both based in San Francisco, have been in a heated race in the US market. Lyft has discussed international plans but so far has expanded only to a handful of cities in Canada.

The two firms are also battling in the emerging market for electric bikes and scooters in major cities.