updated 11:50 am EDT, Mon July 23, 2007
TomTom to buy Tele Atlas
TomTom, the maker of popular GPS units like the ONE series, has decided to buy its principal map supplier, Tele Atlas. Reuters reports that the deal is a extremely lucrative one, valued at €1.8 billion ($2.5 billion); for TomTom, the incentive is said to be diversification, since the company's hardware margins are expected to follow the industry into single digits.
Though little known to the public, Tele Atlas is a preeminent company in mapping; aside from TomTom's GPS units, other products that rely on Tele Atlas include Google Maps, and some cellphones created by Nokia. The acquisition will put TomTom in competition with Garmin, the only other corporation to supply maps for its own GPS units.