Apparently fearful of Nokia’s power over the European navigation industry if the company’s proposed $8.1 billion takeover of map-maker Navteq goes through, the European Commission has announced an in-depth investigation of the competitive ramifications of the deal.
The Commission’s initial investigation into the deal exposed “serious doubts with regards to … competition concerns”, and the in-depth inquiry will focus on whether the purchase will increase the cost of or limit access to Navteq maps used by other mobile phone providers. This is turn would negatively impact consumers.
The European Commission has until August 8, 2008 to make a final decision regarding the impact on industry competitiveness in Europe. The United States Federal Trade Commission approved the deal in December of 2007.
This isn’t the first deal being investigated by the European Union’s trade body. GPS manufacturer TomTom is looking to purchase map-maker TeleAtlas, another deal currently being investigated by the European Commission.