SAN FRANCISCO, May 23 (Reuters) - Ride-sharing service Lyft said it had raised $60 million from venture-capital firm Andreessen Horowitz, underscoring the growing appeal of services that tap into consumers’ willingness to share goods and services for a fee.
Lyft allows customers to book rides from a network of screened drivers, who pull up in cars with fluffy pink moustaches attached to the fenders. Payment takes the form of a donation, made via the Lyft smartphone app.
The cash will “propel the Lyft movement globally,” wrote Andreessen Horowitz partner Scott Weiss in a blog post. Currently, Lyft operates in five areas, including San Francisco, Los Angeles and New York, according to its web site.
Sidecar offers a similar peer-based service, backed by investors such as Lightspeed Venture Partners and Google Ventures. Uber, a Benchmark Capital-backed competitor with its roots in using idle town cars, operates in more cities, including overseas.
Another Google Ventures-backed company, RelayRides, allows consumers to rent other peoples’ cars. TaskRabbit, whose backers include Founders Fund and Shasta Ventures, allows people to outsource errands to a pre-screened network of “rabbits.”
Perhaps the best known service in the emerging “sharing economy” is accommodation service Airbnb, which has raised more than $100 million from backers including Andreessen. It allows people to rent houses, spare rooms and even sofas.
Previous Lyft investors Mayfield Fund and Founders Fund also contributed to Lyft’s latest funding round.