Report – German auto consortium purchasing Nokia’s Here open to more investors image

BMW, Audi and Daimler have teamed up to purchase for almost three billion euros Nokia Oyj’s mapping services unit Here and the latest report says the trio would be willing to let other investors joint he mapping consortium.

According to the sources that have talked under the condition of anonymity because the proceeds are not public, the coming partners would not be entering the newly formed consortium before they complete the 2.8 billion-euro ($3.1 billion) acquisition from Nokia – which is envisioned to be complete during the first quarter of next year. One of the reporting sources said initial negotiations have been held with several competitors, including General Motors, which has already expressed interest in banding. More consortium partners for the maps unit would mean Here’s databases would be fed into by more vehicles, though additional investors would also lift the complexity of what is already in unprecedented joint purchase by the German automakers – which are utter rivals in terms of sales and profits. “Once cars start to generate data and deliver data to a pool, it’s better to have a bigger pool,” comments Frank Biller, an analyst at LBBW. “I see more opportunity than risk in this example. The bigger risk in my opinion would be if they had competed to buy HERE.”

According to a BMW spokesperson, the automakers will have a beneficial influence on Here through the services they will require and will actually pay the fees as any other customer from now on as well. Here is envisioned as a completely separate business that has its own chief executive and they will clearly separate the customer and business-owner attributions.

Via Automotive News Europe