US ride-hailing app Lyft announced yesterday that it is buying bike-sharing operator Motivate, prompting its rival Uber to ramp up its own bicycle offering.

In a deal rumoured to be worth around $250m, Lyft confirmed that it has acquired Motivate's bike share systems across North America, and will soon operate under the moniker of Lyft Bikes.

Motivate is the parent company of a number of bike-sharing programs in the US, including Ford Gobikes, Citi Bike and Divvy. Last year, 80 per cent of bike-share trips across the Atlantic were on Motivate bikes.

However just several hours later, Uber retaliated with the announcement that its Jump electronic dockless bikes unit, acquired by the company in April, is launching a new long-term rental subscription service.

Jump+ will see existing users offered the chance to rent their own personal e-bike and charger for $12 per week, or $50 per month.

The two transport innovators have been in competition with each other for years, with this latest development taking the rivalry to a new level.

Lyft's expansion plans outside of North America has been quiet in recent months, after it was rumoured to be in talks with TfL in late 2016 about a possible London licence.

Uber, meanwhile, announced last month that Jump will soon launch in Europe later this year.

Read more: Uber gears up to launch electric bikes across Europe after Jump acquisition

Lyft currently operates in roughly the same number of cities as Uber in the US, and in Toronto, Canada. Last week, it raised $600m in a fresh funding round led by Fidelity Management, taking its valuation to $15.1bn.

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