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How Google Bought Waze for $1.15 Billion

August 14, 2015 - Written By Tom Dawson

In the history of Alphabet’s Google, key purchases and acquisitions have shaped the direction of the company and created the giant that we know today. For instance, Android wouldn’t be a big Google-y deal if the search giant hadn’t bought the company a long time ago. Android itself has benefitted from small acquisitions over the years, and Google Maps, a key part of the company’s offerings, got a big shot in the arm from Israel’s Waze not too long ago. Now working out of Google’s Tel-Aviv headquarters, the Waze team continue to work on the socially-powered navigation platform. A co-founder, Uri Levine, has recently been talking to Business Insider on how the massive deal went down.

Asked about whether or not there were any controlled leaks surrounding the purchase by Google, Levine has this to say: “Waze never did any PR campaigns about M&A, and not about any of the dialogues that we had” and that as he sees it, “there was a dialog with Google, and they offered what they offered us and we said yes”. The startup scene in Israel has become a vibrant one, and it’s easy to say that Waze has had a lot to do with continuing that, Levine says that this was the “first time there was a billion-dollar consumer app out of Israel. We thought we were setting a new beacon for the industry” and indeed when he “speaks with young entrepreneurs, their whole motive and their beacon model is different”. One aspect of the Waze-Google deal was whether or not there was some sort of bidding war between Apple and others was going on, Levine says that “I don’t know what made Google trigger to make us an offer. But they made us an offer. The terms were right, so we accepted.”

When we look back, Waze was always a sort of natural fit for Google, what with Google Maps becoming a massive part of the Android platform. As for Levine himself, he’s gone on to become an ‘angel investor’ helping out new startups and keeping things in the Israeli scene alive when it comes to startups. The whole article is worth a read down below.