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Uber: The World’s Most Valuable Start-Up?

After weeks of speculation about Uber’s, well uber funding round, the final count is in, and its a monster.

Uber Inc. says it raised $1.2 billion in additional funding from investors, which puts the total valuation for the on-demand car service at $18.2 billion. The app, which connects driver and passengers through smartphones has quadrupled its valuation in uder a year. It still trails  Facebook which was valued early-on by Goldman Sachs at  $50 billion, but now leads $10 billion dollar players like Airbnb Inc.,  Dropbox Inc. and Chinese handset maker Xiaomi Inc.

The latest funding round was led by three mutual-fund managers, according to The Wall Street Journal.  Fidelity Investments threw in about $425 million; Wellington Management coughed up $209 million; and BlackRock Inc., had $175 million to invest. Four venture firms also participated, according to a person familiar with the matter: Summit Partners; Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers; Google Ventures, and Menlo Ventures.

With the big valuation now comes big pressure to perform, and Uber faces challenges moving forward in the form of legal issues and mass protest as the ride-sharing service pushes traditional taxi services out of the market.  However, the company remains confident about its prospects moving forward.

“We’re at least doubling every six months. It’s probably more robust than that, but that’s good enough…That’s revenue. If you look at [the number of] trips, because we’re going into lower and lower-cost products, the growth on trips is like 5, 6x,” CEO Travis Kalanick told the Journal is a separate conversation after the funding coup was announced.  

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