Microsoft Buys Online Map Company

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Microsoft has purchased UK online mapping company Multimap.

Microsoft Buys Online Map Company

The Multimap acquisition will complement Microsoft’s other mapping services, including Virtual Earth and Windows Live services. It will also boost Microsoft’s potential to be a key online mapping provider, as it looks to better compete with both Google and Yahoo.

Data from Nielsen Online shows Google Maps has a 21 percent reach among the globes users, compared to 1 percent for Multimap. Google maps had an estimated 71. 5 million unique visitors in October and Google Earth had 22.7 million unique visitors.

Microsoft’s Windows Live Maps had 7.1 million unique visitors globally during October. Multimap had 1.4 million users in October, trailing competitors MapQuest, ViaMichelin, Mappy and Map24.

"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 UK and globally," said Sharon Baylay, the general manager of Microsoft’s online services group.

Microsoft said their was future potential to intergrate Multimap on it products and platforms.

"Partnering with Microsoft gives us a world of new opportunities to build our mapping services into new technologies and applications," said Jeff Kelisky, the chief executive of Multimap.

Mulitmap will operate as a wholly owned subsidiary of Microsoft, as part of the Virtual Earth and Search teams in the Online Services Group. Financial details of the acquisition were not disclosed.

Microsoft Buys Online Map Company
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