Ramit Varma
Ramit Varma. Campaign photo

Ramit Varma, an entrepreneur from Encino, is throwing his hat into the already crowded race for mayor of Los Angeles, and chose a well-known arena to make his pitch.

Varma rented out Banc of California Stadium, home of Major League Soccer’s Los Angeles FC, to announce his candidacy for mayor on Wednesday.

Varma promised to end homelessness, cut government waste and “build a city of the future — right now” in front of a crowd of about 400 people, the Los Angeles Times reported on Wednesday.

Varma joins a field running for mayor that includes L.A. City Councilmen Joe Buscaino and Kevin de Leon, Rep. Karen Bass, City Attorney Mike Feuer, business leader Jessica Lall and real estate agent Mel Wilson.

The race for mayor could expand even further.

Los Angeles magazine is reporting that real estate mogul and billionaire Rick Caruso has hired a high profile political consulting firm, in what could be a sign that he could be planning a run for mayor of Los Angeles.

Caruso, the developer behind The Grove, Palisades Village and other shopping centers, hired Ace Smith and his firm Bearstar Strategies, Los Angeles magazine reported Wednesday.

The firm worked as a consultant on Kamala Harris’ campaign for U.S. Senate, Gavin Newsom’s campaign for governor and Katie Porter’s campaign for U.S. Congress. A spokesperson for Caruso told Los Angeles magazine he is “seriously considering a run for mayor.”

Varma, a co-founder of the online tutoring firm Revolution Prep, told the Times he plans to pledge at $1 million of his own money toward his campaign.

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