Nokia CEO Says Company Not for Sale
The New Reality for Customer Engagement
Date: 5/31/2018 @ 1 p.m. ET
Nokia CEO Stephen Elop has issued a further denial that his company is an acquisition target.
"Nokia is not for sale," Elop reportedly told an audience during the Open Mobile Summit in London, according to The Wall Street Journal. He dismissed rumors of an imminent takeover as "groundless."
Nokia has been on acquisition watch since May, when rumors emerged of a possible $19 billion takeover by Microsoft. Those rumors started after Russian blogger Eldar Murtaz in, known for his digging into Nokia's affairs, tweeted May 31:"One small software company decided last week that they could spent19 bln USD to buy a part of small phone vendor. That's it."
That wasn't much, but it was enough to kick the rumor mill into gear. As Nokia's stock price has tumbled and analysts issue increasingly pessimistic research notes about the company's future, speculation over an acquisition has only increased. All that being said, though, Microsoft already has a partnership in place that extends most of the benefits of an acquisition--i.e.,Windows Phone running on Nokia's hardware--for a fraction of the cost.
Nokia is also wrestling with the transition from Symbian,its homegrown mobile operating system, to Windows Phone.
"We would continue to avoid the stock as Symbian smartphone sales are falling off faster than expected and we are skeptical that new Windows Phone (WP) models will be able to replace lost profits," Stephen Patel, an analyst with Gleacher & Company, wrote in a May 31 research note. "Our checks suggest mixed carrier support for Nokia"s transition to WP."
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