Lyft Buys Halo Cars In Advertising Play

Ride-hailing company Lyft has acquired Halo Cars, an advertising startup that displays ads on top of vehicles, according to a report from Axios.

The move illustrates the ride-hailing industry’s attempts to pull revenue from sources besides its core business, especially since both Lyft and Uber IPOs have underperformed.

Uber has been testing a similar tie-up with Cargo, an advertising startup in New York that shares ad revenue with the ride-hailing company. Cargo stopped doing its signature snack box endeavor to focus on cartop display advertising.

Halo Cars is still very small and operates in only a few cities. Lyft seems primarily interested in acquiring the team from the company. The company is expected to join Lyft’s media division.

Lyft’s active riders grew 23 percent year over year to reach a new high of 22.9 million in Q4, compared to around 18.6 million in the fourth quarter of 2018. Revenue per active rider was $44.40, compared to $36.02 in 2018.

Lyft Co-founder and CEO Logan Green said that product innovation was a “key driver of our growth,” and that “innovation is what powers our ability to deliver the right product to the right customer at the right time.”

The company has invested in its tech stacks to power the marketplace, which has made a real difference. The firm has also debuted the Lyft matching platform as well as new offerings like Shared Saver, which now accounts for about one-third of shared rides in markets where it has been introduced. Lyft also launched a new modes platform to enhance its infrastructure, which allows the company’s teams to develop and test new endeavors and modes with greater ease and speed, noted Green.

The CEO also highlighted that 2019 was its first full year with scooters, bikes and public transportation.