Uber’s New Eye-popping Valuation

And to think $3.5 billion sounded like a lot.

Uber Inc, the startup known for its fast-growing on-demand car service, said it has raised $1.2 billion in additional capital, driving the company’s new valuation to an eye-popping $18.2 billion.

The funding that catapults the San Francisco-based firm to the most-valuable venture-backed startup in the world comes mostly from three mutual funds: Fidelity Investments, which put in the most, $425 million, Wellington Management and BlackRock, Inc (BLK). VC firms Summit Partners, Kleiner Perkins, Google Ventures (GOOGL) and Menlo Ventures also participated.

Uber’s new net worth is $6.2 billion higher than it was just a month ago, when the company raised money at a roughly $12 billion level. Ten months ago the company was valued at $3.5 billion.

Founded by CEO Travis Kalanick in 2009, Uber has expanded to 128 cities and 37 countries with millions of consumers connecting to the startup’s platform.

“The company has evolved from being a scrappy Silicon Valley tech startup to being a way of life for millions of people in cities around the world,” said Kalanick in a statement. It is the company’s “mission to turn ground transportation into a seamless service and to enable a transportation alternative in cities that makes car ownership a thing of the past.”

At $18.2 billion, Uber is worth more than public companies including car-rental services Hertz Global Holdings, Inc. (HTZ) and Avis Budget Group Inc. (CAR).

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