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Navteq (HERE) being shopped around ...

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2015-04-22/nokia-said-to-target-apple-alibaba-and-amazon-in-maps-unit-sale

Nokia Oyj, the Finnish company selling its money-losing maps business, is trying to drum up interest from some of the biggest names in technology including Apple Inc., Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. and Amazon.com Inc., ....

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Those companies as well as Facebook Inc., a group of German carmakers, and private-equity firms are among the companies looking at Nokia’s maps operations, known as HERE, highlighting the ubiquity and utility of location-based services. Nokia is seeking more than 3 billion euros ($3.2 billion) from a sale of the unit, ....
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Comments

  • Tim 1474 Points
    This will be interesting to watch. HERE makes most (all?) of their money licensing data. While it is easy to think that a large consumer of map licenses like Apple or Facebook might want to purchase the company rather than purchase licenses, I'm not sure that is the right way to be thinking about this type of sale. Rather, we should probably be thinking about it in terms of which company would want not just the map data, but would also want to license that data to others. Without the additional revenue from licenses, the data is just too expensive.

    I don't see companies like Apple or Facebook as wanting to get into the business of licensing the data. I don't see either of those companies wanting to maintain a fleet of road vehicles around the world doing the mapping.

    Garmin might be more of a natural fit, as would automaker alliances and perhaps even Amazon as they start to take on more of the delivery aspects of retail.
  • Boyd 1966 Points
    Well it would just be pocket change for Apple to purchase Here. Assuming that they actually wanted the company (no idea if they do), they probably wouldn't care one way or the other about any nickels and dimes that licensing could bring. And they could easily out-bid any other suitors if they wanted it bad enough.

    I read elsewhere that Garmin's agreement with Here is about to expire. Will be very interesting to see how this plays out. Time to read the fine print in your Garmin lifetime map subscription guys! :))
  • Tim 1474 Points
    Yes, Here would be pocket change for Apple, but they don't want all of the (licensing) baggage that goes along with the data, nor the work involved in updating the data. Apple doesn't typically buy companies like that. They buy companies they can fully absorb with minimal interruption. Apple doesn't want to be in the business of updating maps, nor licensing data.

    My point being that sure, Apple could afford it. But it is probably cheaper (and much less of a headache) to license data from TomTom than it would be to update Here's data, assuming no other revenue models for the data.
  • alokeprasad 102 Points
    Google could buy this. They are heavy into mapping (don't they generate their own maps?) with streetview etc.

    Only reason for either Google or Apple or Microsoft or Samsung to buy this would be to improve their mapping quality and shout out the rest of the smartphone competition from access to such data. They can absorb the losses and don't need to license their IP.
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