Lyft has secured another big investment — this time from billionaire activist Carl Icahn.
The ride-hailing company announced Friday (May 15) that it has secured $150 million in funding, which is on top of its $530 million investment round that was led by Rakuten in March. The most recent round, however, had $100 million coming from Icahn alone. At the time of its March fundraising round, Lyft was valued at $2.5 billion, according to a New York Times report.
"We are very happy to be investing in Lyft. I believe that ridesharing is poised to become a fundamental component of our transportation infrastructure,” Carl Icahn said in a release from Lyft. “The Company’s revenue growth to date has been extremely compelling, and increasing urbanization over the next 5 to 10 years should enable the Company to maintain that trajectory. Additionally, I’ve been very impressed with Lyft’s founders and management team, and I believe they are well-suited to take advantage of this opportunity and to make Lyft an extremely successful company."
He also shared his thoughts with the Times about why Lyft is a worthy investment, despite Uber’s growth in the ride-sharing market — highlighting the price point of Lyft vs. Uber from an investor’s standpoint.
“If you look at the way the market evaluates Uber and then look at the valuation of Lyft—Lyft is a tremendous bargain,” Icahn said in the interview. “There is room for two.”
In the payments and commerce space, Icahn has been an outspoken investor known most for his role in the eBay/PayPal split. Icahn, eBay’s largest shareholder, demanded last year that PayPal split off from eBay since he believed PayPal’s growth was being halted by eBay.
In the announcement of the investment, Lyft also shared its praise toward Icahn for leading the investment, and suggested that his investment shows the company is poised for long-term growth.
“Icahn’s record as an investor is unparalleled, and he will be a big champion for Lyft as we continue to scale and finance future growth. Most recently, he has had tremendous success investing in the tech sector with a focus on companies that deliver incredible long-term value to their customers, such as with Apple and Netflix,” the blog post reads. “We’re thrilled to partner with Carl during this exciting period in Lyft’s growth as we work to rebuild the U.S. transportation infrastructure and reconnect local communities.”