In June, Lyft sought advice from investment firm Qatalyst, reportedly in an attempt to get another company to buy it. Now we know which companies Lyft was targeting.
According to a report in The New York Times, Lyft held acquisition talks with General Motors, Apple, Google, Amazon, Uber and Didi Chuxing. It’s not known how much Lyft was attempting to sell itself for, but it’s most recent valuation was $5.5 billion.
Its most serious interest came from GM, which (obviously) didn’t pan out. The two companies recently partnered to bring rental cars to drivers in need.
The ride-sharing service has a $1.4 billion cash reserve, so there’s no danger of it closing up shop any time soon.
Not finding a buyer, Lyft is now facing uncertain times. Its main rival, Uber, seems to be edging into a new world of total automation, leaving it as the lone major player in the ride-sharing ‘gig economy.’
And Didi, Lyft’s Chinese partner, recently purchased Uber’s assets in the country, complicating a deal many thought would help elevate Lyft. Rather than scale like Uber, Lyft’s partnerships were strengthening it in new markets.
Unfortunately, Lyft’s weak position is probably what prevented it from being acquired. The NYT reports its expected revenue for 2016 is $400 million, and that’s a best-case scenario. With all the incentives it doles out to drivers, Lyft’s actual take may end up being much less.