Google Buys Social Navigation App Waze
BY Em Maier
The Israel start-up behind the popular traffic app gets acquired for $1.03 billion.
It's official: Google is buying Waze, the company's vice president of GEO Brian McClendon announced Tuesday. No terms of the deal were disclosed, but according to The New York Times, the price was $1.03 billion.
The Israeli mapping service has a very engaged--and global--community of nearly 50 million users.
But that's probably not what piqued Google's interest.
As Inc. reporter Eric Markowitz wrote Monday, the real reason Google was eyeing the Israel start-up was data.
Nothing users submit on Waze is private or confidential and that offers goldmine of data that can be repackaged and sold to third-party advertisers--"something Google is famously good at," said Markowitz.
For now, Waze's product development team will continue working in Israel and stresses they'll (mostly) stay the same.
"We will maintain our community, brand, service and organization - the community hierarchy, responsibilities and processes will remain the same," Waze founder Noam Bardin wrote on the company's blog. "See you on the road."