German automakers BMW, Audi and Daimler plan to purchase the Nokia HERE map business unit, in an effort to provide smarter navigation - and pave the way for autonomous vehicles.
Each company will hold an equal stake in HERE, which is available in 50 different languages in almost 200 nations. The deal should close during Q1 next year, once it passes antitrust regulators.
Although the companies didn't announce a price, but reports indicate the German companies will pay $3.2 billion. "For the automotive industry this is the basis for new assistance systems and ultimately fully automated driving," the companies said in a joint statement.
"The acquisition is intended to secure the long-term availability of HERE's products and services as an open, independent and value-creating platform for cloud-based maps and other mobility services accessible to all customers from the automotive industry and other sectors," BMW said.
A number of different companies showed interest in HERE, though the German companies should be able to greatly benefit from their purchase.