General Motors (GM) is the latest auto maker to join the transportation technology startup craze, investing $500 million in Uber Technologies rival Lyft. GM's investment is part of a $1 billion round for privately held Lyft that values the San Francisco-based company at $5.5 billion. Other investors in the round include Kingdom Holding, which provided $100 million in new funding to raise its total commitment to the company to $250 million, as well as Janus Capital Management, Rakuten, Didi Kuaidi and Alibaba. But it is the GM funding that is sure to garner the most attention due to the sheer size of the investment and its strategic significance. The deal comes at a time when other automakers are exploring ways to get ahead of a potential onslaught of technology that could change how automobiles are purchased, including rideshare services and autonomous vehicles under development or rumored as such from Alphabet (GOOG) and Apple (AAPL). Ford Motor Co. (F) is working with Alphabet on its ambitious self-driving car, with announcements expected at the upcoming Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. The Deal's Sarah Pringle has details from New York.
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