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Illustration: Lazaro Gamio/Axios

Lyft has publicly filed its IPO prospectus, and word is that we should be getting the same from Uber within the next few weeks — though not this week.

By the numbers: Lyft's $911 million net loss in 2018 will be a massive hurdle to jump, given that it would appear to be the largest-ever net loss for a company entering the public markets for the first time. As of now, there is no visible path to profitability.

What they're saying: The co-founders write, "We thoughtfully balance investments in growth and profitability considerations, while deliberately leaning more towards growth (especially in these early days)."

  • "Early days" equals 11 years since the founding of its predecessor company, Zimride, and seven years since the founding of Lyft.

The state of play: Expect Lyft to emphasize focus when speaking with prospective investors. It's a ride-hail company, growing at a faster clip than is Uber, and not too distracted by large side projects like food delivery and autonomous vehicle development.

  • It's a smart message, although not entirely accurate. Lyft not only invests in other micro-mobility efforts like bike sharing and scooters, it also has major AV initiatives.
  • Plus, it's unclear that ride-hail is actually a viable business. Uber once said its ride-hail efforts were profitable in large, developed markets like North America, but it's not reaffirmed that claim lately, and Lyft has never made it. One possible reason: the massive, albeit largely anecdotal, increase in rider discount offers. Maybe ride-hail is best as a monopoly, like taxis once were.

Lyft did briefly consider a direct listing, per a source familiar, but is going for a traditional IPO because it needs the new cash. This is a financing event more than a liquidity event.

  • Lyft CEO Logan Green received a 2018 base salary of $401,500, plus nearly $42 million in stock awards. He also apparently required over $935,000 in "personal security services."

What's next: Keep eyes on Fidelity, which holds a 7.71% pre-IPO stake in Lyft. Does it buy back in at IPO, thus validating the concept of pre-IPO optionality investing? Or is it already done and just wants to harvest, thus casting doubt on the minotaur funding model.

Go deeper: Meet the startups that have raised more than $1 billion

Go deeper

Judge nixes Gulf of Mexico oil leases in climate-focused ruling

Tug boats prepare to tow the semi-submersible drilling platform Noble Danny Adkins through the Port Aransas Channel into the Gulf of Mexico on December 12, 2020 in Port Aransas, Texas. Photo: Tom Pennington/Getty Images

A federal judge on Thursday canceled the Biden administration's late 2021 sale of new oil-and-gas drilling leases in the Gulf of Mexico.

Why it matters: The ruling that the greenhouse gas emissions analysis by the Interior's Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) was insufficient is a win for green groups that challenged the decision, as they seek to curb fossil fuel production.

45 million Americans under winter storm watches near New England

Computer model projection showing the winds moving around the powerful East Coast storm on Saturday Jan. 29, 2022. Credit: https://earth.nullschool.net

Nearly 45 million Americans are under winter weather alerts and warnings from North Carolina to northeastern Maine Thursday night, as a major winter storm threatens the region.

Why it matters: It is predicted to be the biggest blizzard since 2018 to strike the Northeast with more than 2 feet of snow possible in parts of eastern Massachusetts, according to the National Weather Service.

2 hours ago - World

Zelensky questions U.S. warnings of "imminent" invasion in Biden call

Biden and Zelensky at the White House last October. Photo: Brendan Smialowski/AFP via Getty

President Biden and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky had a back-and-forth in their call this evening about just how "imminent" the threat of a Russian invasion might be, according to three sources briefed on the call.

Why it matters: Biden has said previously that he believes Russian President Vladimir Putin will probably "move in" to Ukraine, and White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Thursday afternoon that "an invasion could come at any time."