March 16, 2007 -- NAVTEQ (NYSE: NVT), a leading global provider of digital map data for vehicle navigation and location-based solutions, continues to expand its presence in the Russian Federation. Having opened its first Russian office back in the final quarter of 2006, NAVTEQ has now increased its local staff with a specially trained Russian team of geographic analysts. The move underlines NAVTEQ’s commitment to the region and reinforces the localised mapping strategy employed throughout the company’s mapping operations.
“The new Moscow office is part of our overall strategy to be present locally wherever possible,” explained Pavel Kozlov, Business development manager and General Manager NAVTEQ CIS. “Our experience shows that combining local knowledge and human expertise with our special data collection software and tools is the most efficient and effective way of accurately collecting map data and positioning the key attributes necessary for navigation.”
NAVTEQ’s advantage has been achieved through the integrity of the build processes which deliver a map database of unique quality to one worldwide specification. This remains an important benefit for customers utilising the database around the world. To provide accuracy, NAVTEQ has over 600 geographic analysts strategically located around the world who drive the roads, verifying and updating information in the NAVTEQ database. The technology used to create and update maps on the road is universal throughout the company. An increasingly important advantage of the technology is its portability - it can easily be relocated and installed on the vehicles best suited to the local conditions. This advantage is particularly relevant when mapping a country with a varied landscape and unique local needs. The Russian Federation is a perfect example of such a country.
Developing any navigable digital map from scratch is always formidable and Russia is no exception in offering its own individual geographic and logistic challenges, not least of which include weather conditions and driving distances – the Federation is the largest country in the world, covering over 17 million square kilometres.
Other examples include the raising and lowering times of St Petersburg’s many bridges which are lifted each evening to allow night navigation on the rivers and canals. The inclusion of these bridges and times in the map data is imperative so navigation systems can route drivers accordingly at different times of the day. In Moscow the many small residential streets without names have to be represented accordingly in the database. Additionally, seasonal traditions can play a role as does the practice in Moscow of moving vast quantities of snow to the side of the road which reduces the number of available lanes at certain times of the year.
Current Russian Map Coverage
The NAVTEQ Russian map is available in Cyrillic (eg Ñàíêò-Ïåòåðáóð©), transliterated Russian (a representation of the official Russian Cyrillic alphabet in Latin characters – eg Sant-Peterburg) and Latin (e.g. Saint-Petersburg). It includes detailed coverage of the road networks of Moscow and St. Petersburg as well as major connector highways between the two cities and the neighboring countries of Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland (via Kaliningrad) and Belarus and covers approximately 38,000 kilometres of road.
There are over 5,000 POIs throughout Moscow and St. Petersburg in over 46 categories, including petrol stations, restaurants and commuter rail stations. Notable historic locations and tourist attractions are also identified on the map including the Kremlin, Lushniki Sports Complex, Moscow State University and all major railway stations. It also includes cartographic information for Moscow and St. Petersburg and two-dimensional building footprints for select landmarks in both cities.
“With a permanent base in Moscow, we will be able to push forward with our plans for expansion across Russia,” added Pavel Kozlov.