THE NEWS WRAP: Uber rival Lyft now valued at $US2.5 billion after $US530 million funding round

Ride-sharing service Lyft has raised $US530 million ($A688m) in a Series A funding round.


Mashable reports the funding round was led by Japanese e-commerce company Rakuten and gives the startup a valuation of about $2.5 billion.


Lyft plans to use the capital to expand into new cities in the US market and to invest more in its carpooling option Lyft Line. It’s unlikely to spend on an international expansion just yet.  


BBC helping encourage UK children to code


The BBC is giving one million mini-computers to 11-year-olds across the United Kingdom as part of a push to make the UK more digital.


One million Micro Bits – a basic computer similar to a Raspberry Pi – will be given to all children starting secondary school in the autumn term. It will include a new drama based on Grand Theft Auto and the hope is the initiative will encourage more children to get into coding and programming.


BBC director-general Tony Hall says the BBC wants to inspire the digital visionaries of the future.


“Only the BBC can bring partners together to attempt something this ambitious, this is important to Britain’s future on the world stage,” he says.


Medium now allowing publications to use their own custom domains

Blogging service Medium is allowing select users to create their own “publication” with a custom domain, Venture Beat reports.


The feature is being launched in a limited beta as the company works to iron out the kinks before a wider roll out.




The Dow Jones Industrial Average is up 259.83 to 17,895.22. The Australian Dollar is currently trading at US77 cents.

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