Nokia is hoping to draw interest from Apple, Amazon, Alibaba, and other technology giants as it looks to sell off its HERE maps service, a new report claims. Sources say the sale is also attracting the attention of Facebook and German car manufacturers.
“Nokia is seeking more than 3 billion euros ($3.2 billion) from a sale of the unit, said one of the people, who asked not to be identified discussing private information,” according to a Bloomberg report.
“Baidu Inc., Sirius XM Holdings Inc. and Harman International Industries Inc. also were approached about their interest, said the people.”
The scale of interest from so many companies across different sectors of the technology industry highlights the capacity and flexibility of HERE, but the service has lost value since it was initially acquired by Nokia for $8.1 billion back in 2008.
According to the Finnish firm’s financial reports, HERE was worth about 2 billion euros last year. It is now looking to offload it to focus on new hardware following its 15.6 billion euros acquisition of Alcatel-Lucent, which was confirmed last week.
The first round of bidding for HERE — which is already available on Android, iOS, and other platforms via a web browser — is expected to begin at the end of next week, the sources say. Nokia is working with a financial adviser to sell the maps division.
It’s thought companies like Apple will be most interesting in obtaining the HERE mapping technology to improve existing services. Apple Maps has greatly improved since it was launched alongside iOS 6 in 2012, but most agree it still needs work.