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Nokia Acquires Navteq For $8.1 Billion

The mobile handset maker expects its purchase of the electronic mapping company to accelerate its expansion into location-based Internet services.

Nokia will pay $8.1 billion to acquire location and mapping company Navteq in a bold move that snatches the Chicago company from under the nose of Nokia's handset competitor Motorola.

The cash acquisition was announced Monday. Navteq is a leader in electronic mapping and in-vehicle navigation. In its recent second-quarter results, Navteq reported revenue of $202 million and net income of $41 million. Navteq also owns, a provider of traffic information to consumers.

"Location-based services are one of the cornerstones of Nokia's Internet services strategy," said Olli-Pekka Kallasvuo, Nokia's president and CEO, in a statement. "By joining forces with Navteq, we will be able to bring context and geographical information to a number of our Internet services with accelerated time to market."

The two companies had been talking about a deal for a few weeks, according to media reports. Navteq's chairman, Christopher Galvin, said the firm's directors had discussed acquisition with several firms and had determined "Nokia's proposal was the best opportunity available to maximize value for our stockholders."

Galvin was formerly CEO of Motorola, but was eased out in a management transfer a few years ago.

Nokia said Navteq will continue to operate independently under president and CEO Judson Green, who will report to Kallasvuo. The reporting arrangement will ensure that Navteq's customers will continue to have dedicated units serving them with digital map information for automotive navigation systems, mobile navigation devices, and Web-based mapping features.

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