Alphabet, Google’s parent company, has led a $1 billion round of investment into Lyft, the ridesharing company announced on Thursday.
CapitalG, Alphabet’s venture fund, is also sending its partner David Lawee to be a member of Lyft’s board. Lyft’s valuation is now $11 billion.
Lyft and Waymo, Alphabet’s self-driving car subsidiary, confirmed in May that they had signed a deal to jointly pursue projects that would mainstream the automated technology. Axios and Bloomberg then reported in September that Alphabet was holding talks with Lyft about this billion-dollar cash infusion. Lyft has also partnered with GM, Ford, Jaguar, and other companies in its self-driving car endeavors.
The investment raises questions because Google was an early investor in Uber, dropping around $250 million into the Lyft competitor in 2013. Google’s David Drummond had also accepted a seat on Uber’s board, though he recused himself in 2014.
Yet Uber and Google’s relationship has become strained in recent years. In February, Waymo filed a lawsuit accusing Uber of stealing trade secrets. The suit alleges that Anthony Levandowski, a former head of Waymo, left the company with valuable data, including pictures of devices and work emails. He then allegedly shared that info with Uber when it acquired his startup, though Uber has denied the accusations and fired Levandowski when he failed to comply with an internal investigation.
Reuters reported last Thursday that Waymo, coincidentally, demanded that Uber pay $1 billion to settle the suit.