Lyft is a sharing economy service provider, which offers ridesharing, bike sharing and delivery services, which were introduced during the COVID-19 pandemic. Lyft entered the sharing economy transportation market to challenge the position of Uber. Since Lyft’s foundation in 2012, Lyft has attempted to compete with Uber. However, while Lyft is the second largest ride-hailing provider globally, holding a market share of 8 percent in 2022, the company only operates in the United States and Canada. Meanwhile, Uber has expanded globally and controls a quarter of the global ride-hailing and taxi market.
Lyft struggling to increase customer baseLyft’s ridership collapsed at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. Between the fourth quarter of 2019, the last quarter largely unaffected by the COVID-19 pandemic, and the second quarter of 2020, the company’s number of active riders dropped by 62 percent. Prior to this point, active ridership numbers had been on a steady trend of growth. Lyft regained riders throughout 2020 and 2021, but this growth began stagnating towards the end of 2021 and the company has been unable to fully regain the riders lost during the pandemic. As of the fourth quarter of 2022, the number of active riders remained at around 89 percent of active riders recorded in Q4 of 2019. However, Lyft has been able to increase its quarterly revenue per active rider. During the same three year period, revenue per active rider increased by a third and stood at close to 58 U.S. dollars per quarter at the end of 2022.
Diversifying the shared mobility offeringAs the ride-hailing market has matured and the companies operating these services have established themselves, they have begun to expand into other sharing service markets. Lyft’s primary competitor Uber has invested in delivery services, which now account for over a third of its revenue. Both companies have also expanded into the shared micro-mobility sector.
Lyft operates bike-sharing and electric scooter sharing schemes in several cities in the United States and is the market leader for bike hire as well as electric scooter hire in the U.S., holding a share of 28 percent of both markets. While Uber does not own a micro-mobility business, Lime and JUMP electric scooters and e-bikes can be hired through the Uber app, with Lime being one of the main competitors to Lyft in the U.S. shared micro-mobility markets.