Lyft's expanding to Toronto, its first market outside the US, hitting accelerator on international expansion plans

 
Lynsey Barber
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Lyft's international expansion has been expected (Source: Getty)

Ride-hailing startup Lyft has unveiled its intensions for expanding outside the US for the first time just weeks after landing a sizeable $1bn led by tech giant and Google owner Alphabet.

The Uber rival will head north of the border to Canada, specifically the city of Toronto, which also happens to be the location for Alpahabet's very own smart city which it also unveiled a couple of weeks ago.

Read more: Uber agrees multi-billion dollar Softbank deal

"We’ve been looking forward to taking our brand of ridesharing international for some time," the company said in a blog post. Indeed, there have been reports since the start of the year that such plans were imminent.

Lyft is in 300-odd cities across the US but has so far shied away from taking on its biggest rival elsewhere, and other upstarts outside its home market.

Read more: Uber's targeting 2019 for an IPO and is confident SoftBank deal will happen

Uber has ploughed considerable cash into battling it out with foreign rivals. It has since conceded several of them after making losses in some markets, including Didi in China and Yandex in Russia. And Lyft has gained traction in the race against Uber at home, getting a boost as a result of Uber's various troubles this year.

The Lyft expansion comes as Uber finally sealed a deal to raise cash from SoftBank. The high-spending Japanese firm had also considered investing in Lyft.

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