Alphabet and Lyft reportedly held informal talks about a potential acquisition past year. That relationship, though, became more complicated when Alphabet's Waymo sued Uber this year for alleged theft of trade secrets. Alphabet already is an Uber shareholder, but that relationship turned south this year when Google's self-driving vehicle spinoff, Waymo, sued Uber for trade secret misappropriation.
Access to Alphabet's revolutionary technology and $1 billion in capital presents Lyft with an ideal opportunity to pile further pressure on its much bigger rival.
Google's parent company isn't the only firm showing interest in Uber's main competitor, with SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son revealed he has interest in making an investment into either Lyft or Uber last month. In May, they partnered with Lyft to work on autonomous driving together. Although Google did invest millions of dollars into the Uber, it's also now battling with it in court. The company also has two partnerships with startups for autonomous ride-sharing pilot programs: NuTonomy in Boston, and Drive.ai in San Francisco. But others say that Alphabet will end up acquiring Lyft. The news comes amidst Waymo's legal spat with Uber, something that resulted in a deal between Waymo and Lyft earlier this year. Alphabet and Lyft declined to comment on the report regarding the rumored investment, though sources who wished to remain anonymous said that there is a chance that the deal would not push through.
Uber is now in the process of trying to secure more funding, with Lyft set to expand into Canada - which would be its first worldwide expansion.
With another $1 billion in hand, Lyft could ensure its independence during the near future, something John Zimmer its co-founder said was a priority.