Nokia Oyj won a contract to have its digital maps integrated with Oracle Corp. software, a boon for the unprofitable smartphone maker seeking to add revenue sources beyond its struggling handset business.
Nokia, which boosted its location business by acquiring Chicago-based digital mapmaker Navteq Corp. in 2008 for $8.1 billion, will allow Oracle enterprise customers to access maps for almost 200 countries, according to a statement from the companies today.
The agreement expands Nokia's foothold in maps beyond the consumer market, where its location data is currently used in smartphones and cars. Sales at Nokia’s map division increased 4 percent last quarter, while smartphone revenue slumped 34 percent. The map unit accounts for less than 4 percent of Espoo, Finland-based Nokia’s total revenue.
Nokia is also trying to tout its maps to win back smartphone users from Apple Inc.’s iPhone and devices using Google Inc.’s Android software. Apple Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook apologized for the iPhone mapping software released last month that has been criticized for flaws such as misrouted directions and inaccurately located landmarks.
Nokia’s CEO Stephen Elop set up a partnership with Microsoft Corp. last year to produce smartphones using Microsoft’s Windows Phone software and supply services including map data as part of his turnaround plan.
The Finnish company’s stock rose 3.7 percent to 2.08 euros at 5:12 p.m. Helsinki time. That pared the shares’ decline this year to 45 percent.
The Wall Street Journal earlier reported Nokia’s map deal with Oracle.