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Report: Uber ramps up Middle East mapping ahead of Careem takeover

Uber Technologies Inc. is nearing the completion of a major mapping project in the Middle East as the U.S. ride-hailing giant prepares to acquire Dubai-based rival Careem Networks FZ LLC, Reuters reported March 25, citing a source with knowledge of the project.

Uber has reportedly asked a team of 28 engineers and other staff, working for Indian tech company Wipro Ltd., to speed up detailed mapping in Saudi Arabia and Egypt as the company seeks to launch its IPO in April.

The mapping process at Wipro starts with validating existing data, verifying new data gathered from fieldwork and finally tagging establishments manually on the proprietary map, the source told Reuters. Uber employees reportedly conduct the fieldwork while the Wipro workers use websites, social media accounts and other resources to check if the collected data is accurate.

According to the report, Uber said it had not started mapping work in Egypt, while Wipro said it does not comment on specific client engagements.

Uber's takeover of Careem was earlier reported to be worth $3.1 billion in cash and stock. The deal could reportedly be announced ahead of Uber's planned stock market debut in New York, which could value the company at $120 billion.