Lyft has partnered with two Asian ride services, GrabTaxi and Ola, to help them breaking into the overseas market, a place where they have been struggling. Lyft announced an alliance with Didi Kuaidi, which is China's largest taxi company in September, which was a hint that they, like Uber, were looking to expand. The coalition that they formed allows passengers to use many different platforms to hail rides as they travel.
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These four companies, which all connect people who needs rides with certified drivers, are looking to form a sort of monopoly against Uber, which currently operates in 67 countries. They will share information on their new pieces of technology, advancements in products, and knowledge of the local markets and regulations.
This new partnership, which was announced today by Lyft co-founder and President John Zimmer, is expected to reach a final stage by the middle of 2016. According to Reuters, Didi Kuaidi's deal provided Lyft with a $100 million investment, but Ola and GrabTaxi have not offered any financing, a Lyft spokeswoman said.
They also hope to use different types of cash so that travelers can use the apps.
"The thought behind this is, for these Asian geographies, partnering with other companies is the way to go," Zimmer said. "In a geography where there are significant cultural differences, having a local partner is an incredible benefit and strength."
The partnership will also allow Lyft to build up its awareness in Asia without having to start huge marketing campaigns.
While Lyft is currently in over 150 U.S. cities, it doesn't have offices outside of the US yet.
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"I don't think Lyft wants to or can," become a global ride service, said Aswath Damodaran, a professor of finance at New York University's Stern School of Business. "It is a company with much smaller ambitions."