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Ridesharing service Uber needs a little more money to bankroll global expansion and to fend off competitors so it is trying to raise an additional $1 billion in funding at a $25 billion valuation.
So reported the Financial Times, which argues that Uber would use the war chest to further its ambitions for its core ride-sharing services in Europe, Asia, Latin America and Africa, and also to broaden its offerings with various delivery services that the San Francisco-based company has trotted out in several U.S. cities.
If Uber indeed raises an additional $1 billion then its total fundraising to date would be around $2.5 billion as it quickly follows a June 2014 Series D round of $1.2 billion.
Apparently that $1.2 billion wasn’t enough to satisfy CEO Travis Kalanick’s and the team’s ambitions.
One issue for Uber as it expands into new markets is that it faces well-capitalized competitors in new geographies and the funding infusion would help solve that issue.
Another privately backed-round, too, would put off the day that Uber would face the hassle of having to go the IPO route.
When Uber raised its Series D funding in June at a pre-money valuation of $17 billion there was plenty of criticism that such an outsized valuation was a stretch.
A $25 billion valuation for Uber might elicit similar skepticism, although the service certainly has gone mainstream in many markets it has entered around the world.
On the going mainstream issue, this week Morgan Stanley announced that Uber was now an approved option for employees as part of the financial services company’s managed travel program.
Travel and expense company Concur is integrating Uber for corporate accounts. United and other airlines and travel companies are showing Uber as an option in their apps.
In comparison with a potential Uber valuation at $25 billion, Hertz’s current market cap is $10 billion and Avis Budget Group’s is $6.1 billion. Hertz and Avis Budget actually own fleets of cars around the world.
There are reports that Uber’s fundraising would likely involve existing investors such as Fidelity Investments and Blackrock, as well as new ones.
Über won’t have any trouble finding venture capital firms willing to sign on and chip in.