TomTom Telematics sold to Bridgestone
TomTom has agreed to sell its Telematics business to tyre manufacturer Bridgestone for 910 million euros ($1 billion), Bloomberg reports. Last September, the Dutch company said it was looking for a buyer for its car data and fleet management division. Media reported TomTom was in talks with Verizon, Microsoft, Daimler and Michelin.
That the Japanese tyre manufacturer should be the new owner of TomTom Telematics may seem surprising. However, it makes perfect sense as it is focusing on technology for connected and intelligent cars. Sensors can collect data on road conditions on the one hand, and the amount of tyre wear on the other.
"The acquisition should not cause any interruption for our customers, suppliers and staff", a TomTom spokesperson told Fleet Europe. "Bridgestone plans to accelerate data-driven Telematics business models and rapidly expand the Telematics' customer base capitalising on a strong brand value, a large customer base, preferred supplier status with many of the world's largest car manufacturers and vehicle fleets, and 2,600 sales outlets in EMEA."
"Bridgestone recognizes and respects the talent and skills of the Telematics management team and its 670 employees. Bridgestone intends to encourage and grow the business and support the current plans. They want Telematics to continue to serve its customers just as successfully as in recent years and leverage its number one position in a fast-growing market"