Tata-owned JLR bets on ride-sharing startup Lyft

InMotion Ventures Ltd, the new-generation mobility solutions investment arm of Tata Motors-owned luxury car maker Jaguar Land Rover, has invested $25 million in Silicon Valley-based ride-sharing startup Lyft.

“The investment will support Lyft’s expansion and technology plans. It will also provide InMotion Ventures with the opportunity to develop and test its mobility services, including autonomous vehicles,” the company said in a statement, adding that Lyft drivers will be supplied with a fleet of Jaguar and Land Rover vehicles to operate.

The company, which was set up last year, has so far invested in six ride-sharing and connected car solutions startups. Its latest bet follows the seed investment in SPLT Rides, the Detroit-based digital carpool business, which works with Lyft to provide non-emergency medical transport.

For Lyft, the $25 million from InMotion is part of a $600-million funding round, which valued the company at $7.5 billion.

JLR’s investment in Lyft points to the increasing interest from carmakers to partner with and invest in new-age mobility solutions companies.

In fact, auto major Ford’s transportation solution investment arm, Ford Smart Mobility, had also led a $24 million round in Indian self-drive car rental company Zoomcar last year.

Interestingly, Tata Group, through its Tata Opportunity Fund, had invested about $100 million in Silicon Valley-headquartered ride hailing major Uber two years ago, while its chairman emeritus Ratan Tata had made a personal investment in its Indian rival Ola.

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