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$1B Lyft investment, led by Google, gets upped to $1.5B

Now valued at $11.5 billion, the ride-hailing company has extra fuel to compete with its rival Uber.

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Lyft just got an extra $500 million boost in funding.

Lyft

Lyft's latest round of funding just got bigger.

The ride-hailing company announced in October that it had received a $1 billion investment, led by Google-parent Alphabet's investment arm CapitalG. On Tuesday, Lyft said the funding had been increased by $500 million, for a grand total of $1.5 billion. The influx of cash could help Lyft in its battle to grab market share from rival Uber.

"It's been a breakout year for Lyft, made possible by our team members, drivers, and passengers," Lyft President John Zimmer said in an emailed statement. "We will continue to invest in our community and look forward to an even bigger 2018."

Compared with Uber, Lyft has long been the small dog in the ride-hailing world. Before now, it's received $2.6 billion in venture funding, whereas Uber has received $12.9 billion and is valued at $68 billion. With this extra $500 million in funding, Lyft is now valued at $11.5 billion.

Lyft has grown steadily over the last year as Uber has been mired in scandals. Since January, Lyft has launched in dozens of new cities across the country and now is nearly as ubiquitous as its rival. It's currently available in all 50 states and just launched internationally in Toronto, Canada.

Ridership is also up. From January to October this year, Lyft said it gave 500 million rides -- that's more than all its rides in the previous four years combined.

For this new round of funding Lyft is partnering with Fidelity Management & Research Company and Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan, along with a handful of other existing investors.

"Through our investment in Lyft, Ontario Teachers' will be participating in the continued growth of ridesharing miles traveled in North America," said Nicole Musicco, senior managing director of public equities for the Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan, which is headquartered in Toronto.

Alphabet's investment in Lyft comes as Uber is currently locked in a legal battle with Waymo, Alphabet's self-driving car unit. Waymo accused Uber of stealing its autonomous vehicle technology; Uber calls Waymo's claims "baseless." The trial is slated to begin in February.

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