Nokia is selling its Here maps service to German car makers Audi, BMW, and Mercedes for $3 billion.
It was previously reported that Uber was interested in purchasing the service, but the car companies clearly brought the most attractive offer to Nokia’s table.
Although Here might not be a popular mobile mapping app, it remains popular in the automative industry.
Last year, Nokia said that four out of five new vehicles sold with built-in navigation were being powered by Here.
New owners VW, Daimler and Mercedes all utilize the service, as have many other manufacturers, including Ford, Toyota, and aftermarket GPS companies like Garmin.
“High-precision digital maps are a crucial component of the mobility of the future. With the joint acquisition of Here, we want to secure the independence of this central service for all vehicle manufacturers, suppliers and customers in other industries,” said Dieter Zetsche, Chairman of Daimler.
In a press release, the trio of auto companies stress the acquisition’s importance in preparing the automotive industry for the future:
“Here is laying the foundations for the next generation of mobility and location based services. For the automotive industry this is the basis for new assistance systems and ultimately fully autonomous driving. Extremely precise digital maps will be used in combination with real-time vehicle data in order to increase road safety and to facilitate innovative new products and services. On the basis of the shared raw data, all automobile manufacturers can offer their customers differentiated and brand-specific services.”
The deal is expected to close in the first quarter of 2016.