Lyft has been quietly pitching investors for a new round of funding that could boost its valuation to as much as $7 billion.

The ride-hailing service hopes to raise at least $500 million, according to The Wall Street Journal. Lyft, which is currently valued at $5.5 billion, has not said publicly which investors will be involved in the funding round.

The company also has not disclosed what it plans to do with the money, but in recent weeks it has used some of its $1 billion in cash on hand to expand to more than 90 new markets.

Lyft has adopted a scrappy and entrepreneurial approach to take advantage of the mistakes of its rival, Uber, which has recently been at the center of several high profile controversies. For example, Lyft has been trying to market itself as the driver-friendly company, in contrast with Uber, whose co-founder Travis Kalanick came under fire this week for berating one of the company's drivers. Lyft encourages its users to tip drivers by including a tip feature on its app, unlike Uber's app, which doesn't include such an option.

The approach may have paid off in Lyft's search for funding. In January, Uber continued to transport passengers during a New York City taxi driver protest against the White House's travel ban, leading many Uber users to delete the app. That helped Lyft increase its share of U.S. spending on ride-hailing apps to 20.8 percent, from 16.5 percent two weeks earlier. According to the WSJ, Lyft used this data in its pitch to investors.

Published on: Mar 2, 2017