First Free Story (1 of 3)Join Skift Pro
Google Inc.’s former head of mapping is joining Uber Technologies Inc., as the mobile-car booking startup ramps up efforts to develop its own technology related to maps, navigation and transport.
Brian McClendon will lead Uber’s Advanced Technologies Center, the San Francisco-based company said on Tuesday. McClendon will report to Jeff Holden, Uber’s chief product officer.
Google and Uber are increasingly stepping on each other’s toes, with the Web-search company looking to develop its own ride-hailing technology. Uber may also be targeting self-driving cars, an area where Google has devoted investment and research. In February, Uber teamed up with Carnegie Mellon University to work on transportation and mapping technologies, which led to the creation of the startup’s Advanced Technologies Center in Pittsburgh.
“We’re thrilled that Brian is joining the Uber team,” Holden said in an e-mailed statement. “He led the development of Google Earth and Google Maps, truly world-class products, from the early days.”
Uber has also been seeking to team up with Baidu Technologies Inc. and Apax Partners to pursue Nokia Oyj’s map business, people with knowledge of the matter said last month. The winner of the multiround bidding process for the maps unit, known as HERE, hasn’t been announced and may be ongoing.
Re/code reported McClendon’s appointment earlier.
This article was written by Eric Newcomer from Bloomberg and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.