Uber has raised total funding of US$10bn, setting a new record for US technology companies. The company is close to raising an additional US$2bn from several of the world’s biggest banks ahead of an IPO.
The car-hailing company will invest much of the new funding in expanding into a further 300 cities around the world.
The San Francisco-based company is also investing heavily in new technology areas, such as driverless cars, according to the Financial Times.
Uber is facing mounting legal costs as it overcomes regulatory obstacles during its expansion. For example, last week, San Francisco courts ruled that Uber-affiliated drivers should be classed as employees rather than contractors for the company.
The US$10bn fund is larger than the sums raised by either Facebook or Google ahead of their respective IPOs.
The US$2bn credit line is close to being secured from several global banks, including Morgan Stanley, Deutsche Bank and Goldman Sachs.
Uber is also seeking another US$1.5bn in equity funding that will value the company at US$50bn.
Location data complaint filed against Uber
Uber has become embroiled in a new privacy battle after the Electronic Privacy Information Centre (EPIC) filed a complaint with the FTC, asking the US to halt Uber’s pending data collection practices.
In a 23-page complaint, EPIC warns that Uber will try to collect location data even when the app is running in the background.
EPIC has been successful in filing similar complaints against Google and Facebook, which hasve resulted in negotiated settlements.
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