Last week Microsoft acquired Multimap, an online mapping firm based in the UK:
Microsoft Corp. has acquired Multimap, one of the United Kingdom’s top 100 technology companies and one of the leading online mapping services in the world. The acquisition gives Microsoft a powerful new location and mapping technology to complement existing offerings such as Virtual Earth, Live Search, Windows Live services, MSN and the aQuantive advertising platform, with future integration potential for a range of other Microsoft products and platforms. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
One of the best-known online mapping companies worldwide, Multimap provides a publicly available personal mapping service at http://www.multimap.com, as well as a range of integrated business services.
Multimap will operate as a wholly owned subsidiary of Microsoft, as part of the Virtual Earth and Search teams in the Online Services Group. The acquisition is the latest in a series of moves as Microsoft seeks to expand its online services to deliver software, services, and premium content and applications to consumers and businesses.
No price tag was announced, Rhys Blakely at The Times suggest it was $50 million. It could well be a technology buy, but as Lewis Page observes at The Register, “it’s relatively difficult (for users, anyway) to see all that much difference between Multimap’s technology and Microsoft’s existing offerings. Redmond would seem to be buying Multimap’s users rather than its platform.”