Ride-sharing app Uber is acquiring mapping and search startup deCarta, according to reports.
Mashable reports that the acquisition is another "acqui-hire," or buying a company for its talent, but Uber also wants its technology, too, which includes mapping, local search and navigation.
"A lot of the functionality that makes the Uber app so reliable, affordable and seamless is based on mapping technologies," an Uber spokesperson told Mashable. "With the acquisition of deCarta, we will continue to fine-tune our products and services that rely on maps –- for example UberPOOL, the way we compute ETAs, and others – and make the Uber experience even better for our users."
While Uber has spent much of its time with "global expansion," it hasn't really made many acquisitions, so buying deCarta may be meaningful for the company. "Uber has not acquired a single company," Uber chief Travis Kalanick said last September. "We are focused on the product. We are in 45 countries. We haven’t spent time on M&A (mergers and acquisitions).”
So far, Uber is valued at $40 billion and seems to have no trouble attracting investors. DeCarta will run as it has with only 10 fewer employers (30 in total) and will be a "wholly-owned subsidiary" of Uber. The ride-sharing startup will likely use the mapping software for its drivers and customers as a way to extend its brand.