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GPS Technology Specialist Garmin Acquires DeLorme

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(Credit: Gabe Souza/Portland Press Herald via Getty Images) Delorme's giant globe, 'Eartha' is seen at the company's facility in Yarmouth before dawn Wednesday, October 16, 2013. Delorme's giant globe, 'Eartha' is seen at the company's facility in Yarmouth before dawn Wednesday,
February 12
3:22 AM 2016

Garmin, the specialist in GPS technology on Thursday announced the acquisition of DeLorme. Following the acquisition, DeLorme, known for its maps and satellite communication devices, will become R&D center for Garmin.

Garmin acquired DeLorme at an undisclosed amount. As the consequence of acquisition DeLorme will close its map store in the company's headquarter in Yarmouth, Maine. Nevertheless, the company will continue to produce its famous Atlas and Gazetteer map series, according to Kim Stiver, DeLorme's vice president of marketing.

"The deal hasn't closed, and we're very early in the process of talking about integration with Garmin," Stiver said as cited by CBS WGME 13. "They certainly admire our strengths and history in mapping."

As an early pioneer of global positioning system technology, DeLorme is a respected company in the GPS and satellite tracking technology. The company is also known for its inReach, a hand-held, two-way satellite communication device as its flagship product. The inReach provides a wide range of GPS and satellite communication devices, which enable users to trigger an SOS, also providing two-way messaging system via satellite.

DeLorme was founded in 1976 by David DeLorme who wanted to make a better and updated map of Maine and states in the U.S., combining data of state highway, county and town maps, and federal surveys. The company made its first detailed topographic map data of the entire world in 1987.

With its extensive and updated data, DeLorme is an undisputed pioneer of GPS technology.

Garmin CEO Cliff Pemble acknowledge DeLorme reputation and told ABC News, "DeLorme is a respected brand with exciting products and technologies that are a natural fit in the Garmin portfolio."

DeLorme's headquarter in Maine is a home for Eartha, the world's largest rotating globe. The globe has a diameter of more than 41 feet (12.5 m) with 600 pounds (2,500 kg) in weight. Based on official measurement from Guinness Book of World Records in 1999, the globe's diameter is 41 feet 1.5 inches (12.53 m).

Eartha was put in place in July 1998 and has become a public attraction since then. It also become the landmark of Yarmouth. After the acquisition, Eartha will remain open for public and tourist attraction.

Some people have showed concern of DeLorme. One visitor to DeLorme map store, Kay Fiedler of Oakland told Portland Press Herald, "It's just kind of sad because it's a Maine institution."

DeLorme will become research and development center for Garmin, with an emphasis on satellite communications devices and technologies. Garmin is a maker of GPS receivers device founded in 1989 in Kansas. The name Garmin was a portmanteau of its founders, Gary Burrell and Min Kao.

Following the acquisition of DeLorme, Garmin strengthens its position as GPS technology specialist. DeLorme will become research and development center for Garmin.

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