Nokia Have Incited Massive Interest in the Sale of Here Maps
Nokia appear to have succeeded in their aim to drum up interest after announcing the sale of HERE Maps.
There appears to be a large amount of demand for Nokia’s HERE Maps, with Uber and Baidu even teaming up to bid for the new mapping unit:
“Uber Technologies Inc. is teaming up with Baidu Technologies Inc. and Apax Partners to pursue Nokia Oyj’s maps business, people with knowledge of the matter said, as a bidding war for the unit intensifies.
Another group, comprising China’s Tencent Holdings Ltd., NavInfo Co. and Swedish buyout firm EQT Partners AB, is also bidding for the unit, which may fetch as much as $4 billion, three of the people said, asking not to be identified because negotiations are private.
Microsoft Corp. has offered to buy a minority stake, while three U.S. private-equity firms — Hellman & Friedman, Silver Lake Management and Thoma Bravo — are also in the running, the people said.”
Uber had previously been planning to go it alone with a $3 billion bid for HERE. There are other companies bidding in addition to those mentioned above, creating a lot of competition.
HERE is one of the few mapping services that works on a global scale, and was rebranded from Navteq, which Nokia acquired in 2007 for over $8 billion. If Nokia sell HERE, they will likely be making a $4 billion loss unless the competition between bidders forces the price up closer to the $8 million mark.
Facebook could be looking to also join in on the bidding, while Apple appears to be absent so far as it has access to most of the functionality HERE offers already.
The Cupertino company have acquired Coherent Navigation in a similar set of circumstances. Coherent Navigation provides a more accurate GPS location by making use of a combination of signals from both lower and higher orbiting satellites.
Apple is also continuing to improve the accuracy of its navigation on Apple Maps and may look to purchase other technology if required to improve its functionality.
It will be interesting to see the results of the bidding and which company chooses to acquire HERE.