Nokias High-Tech Maps: Top Automotive Players Bidding Against Technology Companies

Published By : 11 May 2015 | Published By : QYRESEARCH

Bidding for Nokia’s high-tech mapping unit HERE has heated up as the top German automakers compete against the Silicon Valley technology giants. The high quality maps offered by Nokia are way ahead of the Google maps. They can be linked to a mobile phone signal to pinpoint the commuter’s exact location to the driver and enhance the navigation experience. Also, feeding real-time traffic information to the map in a self driving car will help customers to reach their destinations faster. As both technology giants and automakers are focused on building self driving cars for future, HERE’s maps would be instrumental in their pursuit. According to the analysts at Exane BNP Paribas, the high-definition mapping in autonomous cars and connected car services has the potential to turn into a US$50 billion market.

Though the companies have declined to comment, sources close to auto companies have revealed that the German automotive giants Daimler, BMW and Volkswagen’s premium car division Audi have jointly submitted an indicative bid. Even though the car manufacturers can pool 700 million euros each to match the book value of HERE, the fat pockets of technology companies might outbid them. Some investment bankers hope a private equity firm to join the car manufacturers to make an industrial consortium which would not be dominated by any particular company. According to reports, taxi service Uber has submitted a bid worth US$3 billion. With such bids, Nokia can keep a stake in the business and still make profit. In 2007, Nokia had bought the business for US$8.1 billion, which is presently valued at 2 billion euros.

Though HERE has been segregated from Nokia’s core operations, the Finnish company might be interested to claim a stake. Inside sources reveal that Nokia has hired advisors from Evercore to search the market for potential buyers and initiate a second round of indicative bids. 
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