Weekend read: Where in the World Is #Nokia Now?

Bloomberg.com published this week a good piece summarizing Nokia’s history and the important role it had and still has in Finland. The article is titled “They Built the First Phone You Loved. Where in the World Is Nokia now?”, and does a good job in describing Nokia’s history and plans for the future. The author included some interesting statements from Nokia executives, where we find out that Nokia is betting big on 5G, and if it doesn’t pay out, Nokia will have to reinvent itself again. Check some parts of the article down below.

The next two years are going to be a particularly important time for Nokia, as the industry begins rolling out the next generation of wireless networks. So-called 5G will bring faster and richer data. According to Nokia and its rivals—the developers of the underlying equipment—those changes will enable a whole new set of mobile-dependent technologies: driverless cars, telemedicine, more fully automated workplaces, and other changes we’ve yet to imagine. “I want to be a company that helps large enterprises digitize,” says Nokia Chief Executive Officer Rajeev Suri. The company’s bet on 5G is its biggest one since it got out of the phone business. If it fails, it will need to radically reinvent itself once again.

Siilasmaa founded local cybersecurity company F-Secure Corp., and when he was brought on at Nokia, the phone maker was listing dangerously. Device sales were down 26 percent in the second quarter of 2012 from a year before, to $4.5 billion. “Our employees were quite demotivated from all the bad news around us. The press was speculating when our bankruptcy will happen, not if,” he says.

The deal was a minor national trauma in Finland. It was also a way to make the best of a bad and rapidly deteriorating situation, freeing the company to concentrate on profitably selling equipment to wireless providers. Until then, Suri had run that business as a joint venture with Siemens AG. Since assuming control in 2009, he had lifted it from losses to 12 percent operating margins by cutting costs and focusing on the U.S., Japan, South Korea, and other wealthier markets.


The full article can be read over at Bloomberg.com.