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Why Car Companies Bought a Mapping Business

HERE Mapping Resources digital Mapping

Whether printed on a globe for teaching children country locations or navigating streets of an unfamiliar city maps have always been valuable. Therefore, it should come as no surprise that three German car manufacturing giants (Audi, BMW, Daimler) paid three billion dollars for Nokia’s HERE mapping division. This move will give the car companies a powerful asset that has drawn the admiration of several tech giants like Facebook for its incredible quality and reliability.

Nokia’s HERE mapping software is regarded as one of the four best in the technological world. The company has been in the digital mapping market since 2001 and has steadily acquired its assets as it has built HERE and expanded upon its capabilities. Since Nokia is restructuring its company and organization, they have decided to part with HERE and get out of the mapping business to focus on reentry into the smartphone and cell phone market.

One of the biggest reasons for the sale is that HERE mapping powers over 80% of all in-car GPS systems on the market today. As cars continue to get more and more advanced, and as we continue towards the automation of driving, the reliable and consistent mapping will provide these companies with an incredible advantage. Over half of the one billion dollars in revenue that HERE generated in the year 2014 was tied directly to the automotive industry. This connection keeps one of the best-kept secrets of the auto industry still in the family.

There’s also a competitive reason for the sale. The other rumored buyer is the ride-sharing app Uber. The Uber app is compatible with several of the mapping apps currently on the market, including Google Maps and Waze. Having their mapping system in-house, especially one this valuable would provide investors another reason to be excited about the company’s IPO launch on the New York Stock Exchange. The German car retailers also ensured that this technology would stay in their cars and not become exclusive to an app many see as exploitive to their employees.

To learn how HERE Mapping Resources can help your business navigate, contact us.