While Uber has dominated the headlines this week as the troubled company tries to install a new CEO, their main competitor has quietly announced an increase in their American footprint. Lyft Inc. announced that they are now offering service in 40 states as the ride-hailing company continues to expand.
Lyft continues to take advantage of the turbulence at Uber. On Tuesday, the Uber board announced that they had tapped Dara Khosrowshahi as CEO. The current CEO of Expedia is supposed to bring discipline to a toxic corporate culture plagued with sexual harassment and unethical and potentially illegal business practices. Just hours after Khosrowshahi responded to the offer, Uber announced that it was under preliminary investigation by the United States Department of Justice for potentially bribing foreign officials.
Lyft has been able to grow without major scandal or distractions, helped in no small part by the attention-grabbing mistakes of their main rival. Lyft has expanded their service area to cover the entirety of 32 states, including rural and suburban communities. Lyft now covers 40 states in total in the U.S. and can reach almost 94% of the market, or 300 million people. This isn’t just good for Lyft, it’s good for consumers that can now pick between the two competitors as well as other ride-sharing services and taxi companies. The company says that now has the biggest footprint of any ridesharing service in the U.S. This should make General Motors happy, as the automaker owns a 9% stake in the company after a $500 million investment in January of 2016.
The ride-hailing service is growing at twice as fast as Uber, but it still has a long way to catch up (Uber does approximately ten times the volume by rides). Thankfully for the small company, Lyft users are also much happier than Uber rides. While this is no doubt influenced by the fact that Lyft is smaller and has a smaller pool of potential troubles that could result in complaint or user dissatisfaction, we suspect that Uber’s mismanagement, angry drivers, and scandals play a significant role in tanking their user ratings.