The Simon-backed e-scooter rental service is looking to boost its valuation to $2.5bn through a series D round that could be up to $300m in size.

Bird, a US-based e-scooter rental service backed by real estate developer Simon Property Group, is in the process of raising a series D round that would value the company at $2.5bn, TechCrunch reported yesterday.

The round is expected to be led by venture capital firm Sequoia Capital, sources told the publication. A report by The Information earlier this month suggested Bird was seeking between $200m and $300m by the end of this summer at a valuation of more than $2.3bn.

Bird declined to make an official statement, noting only that the company did not comment on rumours.

Founded in 2017, Bird operates a dockless network of electric scooters, bikes and mopeds that users can unlock through its app. In addition to operating a rental service, Bird also sells a version of its e-scooter and offers buyers free rides when they travel elsewhere.

The network spans more than 100 cities across the US, Europe and the Middle East. Bird has also partnered more than a dozen universities across the US to make its scooters available on campuses.

The company paid a reported $25m to acquire Scoot, the US-based electric vehicle rental service backed by automotive conglomerate Mahindra Group’s corporate venturing division, Mahindra Partners, last month. It is also looking to expand into 50 European cities this summer.

Sequoia led a $300m series C round for Bird in June 2018 that also featured Accel, B Capital, CRV, Sound Ventures, Greycroft, Craft Ventures, Index Ventures, Valor Equity Partners, Goldcrest Capital, Tusk Ventures and Upfront Ventures.

Reports in January 2019 suggested Bird was looking to raise an additional $300m in a series C round led by financial services and investment group Fidelity, though TechCrunch’s report suggests the deal did not close.

Valor Equity Partners and Index Ventures co-led the company’s $100m series B round in March 2018, following a $15m series A led by Craft Ventures and backed by Valor, Tusk Ventures, Lead Edge Capital and Goldcrest Capital the month before.

Simon Ventures, the retail-focused corporate venturing unit owned by Simon Property, includes Bird in its portfolio but has not revealed when it invested in the business.