The driver hiring app Uber has become one of the fastest-growing tech companies on the planet and is now looking for an investment of US$500m which could value the company at US$12bn.
A number of investors are already lined up to make significant bids in the business, including a number of major hedge fund organisations, mutual fund group BlackRock, as well as the private-equity firms of Technology Cross Ventures and General Atlantic, according to The Wall Street Journal.
While not totally assured, the five-year-old company will be looking to wrap up any investment deals in the coming weeks, which would coincide with the end of the financial second quarter.
To date, the service has reached 100 of the world’s largest cities, with its first Irish base in Dublin.
The rate of progress of the relatively new start-up and the wealth it has generated places Uber in the spectrum of few other companies which include Dropbox and Chinese phone newcomer Xiaomi.
Perhaps Uber’s largest challenge comes not from financial issues but rather legal ones from international governments and, in particular, organisations responsible for taxis who see the introduction of potentially hundreds of new drivers as a significant threat to their livelihood.