One of Silicon Valley’s Most Prominent Investors Is Joining Lyft’s Board of Directors
Famed Silicon Valley investor Ben Horowitz is joining Lyft’s board of directors, the company said on Monday.
Horowitz’s venture capital firm, Andreessen Horowitz, first invested in the pink-mustachioed ride-hailing company in 2013 as part of the company’s Series C round, and it participated in the following round as well.Horowitz is replacing fellow a16z partner Scott Weiss, who took a seat at the company’s board when it first invested in Lyft, the company confirmed to Fortune.
In February, Weiss announced that he is stepping back from day-to-day investing to spend more time with his family but that he would remain on the company’s board. A week later, the Wall Street Journal reported that Andreessen Horowitz, along with Founders Fund, sold a total of $148 million in Lyft shares in December to Saudi Arabia’s Prince al-Waleed bin Talal and his Kingdom Holding Co. The motives for the sale remain unclear.
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What’s more, rumors swirl over the summer that Lyft had hired boutique investment bank Qatalyst to help it find a buyer or alternatively, raise funds. Lyft is still battling rival Uber for the U.S. ride-hailing market, though Uber is much bigger and better-funded.
Despite numerous media reports, Lyft has maintained that it’s not actively looking to sell itself. Raising more funds would still be a possibility, though the company had about $1.4 billion in the bank, a source shared with Fortune in August. In January, Lyft raised $1 billion in funding, with General Motors (GM) contributing half it and taking a seat on the company’s board.
“We’re excited to continue working with Ben and couldn’t imagine a better and more experienced partner for the next phase of growth at Lyft,” Lyft co-founder and president John Zimmer said in a statement sent to Fortune.
Lyft’s other board members are co-founders Logan Green and John Zimmer, GM President Dan Ammann, Icahn Capital’s Jonathan Christodoro, investor and former Trulia CFO Sean Aggarwal, Floodgate Fund’s Ann Miura-Ko, and Rakuten’s Hiroshi Mikitani.
Horowitz co-founded his venture capital firm in 2009 with Marc Andreessen. The two had worked together first at Netscape Communications, best known for building the web browser Netscape Navigator. The pair then founded Loudcloud (later renamed Opsware), which Hewlett Packard purchased in 2007.
An earlier version omitted Hiroshi Mikitani from the list of board members. The story has been updated.