(Adds background on industry consolidation)
NEW YORK Dec 12 Microsoft Corp (MSFT.O) said
on Wednesday it has acquired Multimap, one of Britain's top
online mapping companies.
Financial terms were not disclosed.
Microsoft's acquisition is the latest in a series of deals
in the consolidating digital mapping industry. Dutch navigation
device maker TomTom NV (TOM2.AS) launched a takeover bid for
digital map maker Tele Atlas NV TA.AS last month.
Mobile phone manufacturer Nokia Oyj NOK1V.HE also agreed
to acquire Navteq Corp. NVT.N for $8.1 billion in October.
Microsoft said the deal gives it location and mapping
technology that complement its existing offerings such as
Virtual Earth, Windows Live Search and other online services.
Multimap will operate as wholly owned subsidiary of Microsoft.
"This acquisition will play a significant role in the
future growth of our search business and presents a huge
opportunity to expand our platform business beyond the U.K. and
globally," said Sharon Baylay, general manager of the Online
Services Group at Microsoft.
(Reporting by Franklin Paul and Daisuke Wakabayashi, editing
by Maureen Bavdek)