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Lyft plans to spend $300 million on Amazon Web Services through 2021

Key Points
  • Lyft has signed up to pay cloud market leader Amazon Web Services at least $80 million per year for the next three years, totaling at least $300 million.
  • Uber is also an AWS customer, as are other big companies expected to go public this year like Slack and Pinterest.
Logan Green, co-founder and chief executive officer of Lyft Inc.
David Paul Morris | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Lyft is paying up big for its use of Amazon's cloud.

In the ride-hailing company's IPO prospectus filed on Friday, Lyft said it has a commitment to spend at least $300 million on Amazon Web Services over three years — from the beginning of 2019 through 2021. The company must spend at least $80 million in each of those years on AWS services, the filing said.

The reliance on AWS brings potential risks for Lyft.

"It may become increasingly difficult to maintain and improve our performance, especially during peak usage times, as we expand and the usage of our offerings increases," Lyft said.

The terms in the filing are updated from a previous agreement with AWS signed in March 2018. The original deal said that Lyft had to spend at least $150 million through mid-2021, which would have worked out to less than $46 million per year.

Earlier this week, AWS put out a press release highlighting Lyft's heavy adoption of its cloud services. 

Lyft "is leveraging the breadth and depth of AWS's services, including database, serverless, machine learning, and analytics, to automate and enhance on-demand, multimodal transportation for riders and drive innovation in its autonomous vehicles business," Amazon said.

Lyft is the first notable tech company this year to file to go public, and we can expect to see AWS show up in plenty of other prospectuses. Uber, Lyft's primary U.S. rival, is an AWS customer, while Slack and Pinterest are also big users of Amazon's public cloud technology. 

Messaging app maker Snap said in 2017 that it had committed to spend $2 billion over five years on Google's rival cloud and $1 billion over five years on AWS. Those original commitments suggested Snap would pay $600 million a year to the two providers for cloud resources.

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