It's a bit unusual to mention a Japanese tire manufacturer on tech.eu for the second time within a week but it seems like Bridgestone is getting closer to the European tech ecosystem. Today, it was announced that Bridgestone Europe has paid €910 million for the telematics business of TomTom, the Amsterdam-based location technology company known for its satnav devices and map services.
TomTom announced the intention to sell the telematics division — that is, the business of fleet management solutions — back in September. The price paid by Bridgestone Europe makes it worth about a half of TomTom's market cap of some €1.9 billion.
The Dutch map and navigation company plans to use the cash to return €750 million to its shareholders by means of capital repayment, combined with a share consolidation, which will happen later in 2019.
With the Telematics business sold, TomTom will focus on “maps, navigation software and real-time traffic information and services,” the company stated in a news release. TomTom hasn't been doing great over the past few years but the most recent blow that sent its shares down 26 percent came in September when Renault, Nissan, and Mitsubishi announced a map partnership with Google. Since then, the stock price of TomTom has increased from €6.28 to around €8 per share.