Rajeev Suri will become the new chief executive of Finnish telecommunications gear maker Nokia, the company announced on Tuesday, confirming what analysts had expected. Known to be on the short list of candidates, he’s been with the company for over 20 years and took over as CEO of Nokia Solutions & Networks (aka Nokia Siemens, now renamed just “Networks”) in 2009 — experience that will prove relevant to the first of three focus points for Nokia going forward.
Nokia is forming a whole new executive structure with other executive moves, as interim CEO Risto Siilasmaa goes back to his role as solely Chairman of the Board of Directors and Michael Halbherr takes over as CEO of Here.
In a video address (embedded after the break), Suri says he anticipates that coming changes in tech “will be as profound as the creation of the internet,” and sees opportunities in front of Nokia that are “as great as I have ever seen.”
“Our view is that only one other company has location services that come close to the depth and breadth of those from HERE – and HERE has the advantage of being independent from any operating system or single business model.”
Nokia finalized the 5.4 billion euro ($7.5 billion) sale of its struggling mobile phone business to Microsoft on Friday.
We’ve seen hints at what else Nokia is capable of in the development and application of its Here mapping technology, which the company says can be found “in four out of five cars in North America and Europe with integrated in-dash navigation.” There’s even time for a shot at Google, as Suri points out that “Our view is that only one other company has location services that come close to the depth and breadth of those from HERE – and HERE has the advantage of being independent from any operating system or single business model.” To develop new tech, it’s seeking out external inventors through the “Invent with Nokia” program, and its Networks business counts 90 of the world’s top 100 phone companies among its customers.
Last year, of the 12.7 billion euro turnover from Nokia’s continuing operations, 11.3 billion came from NSN. Navigation unit HERE accounted for 914 million and its patent unit, dubbed advance technologies, 529 million. Finnish telecommunications equipment maker Nokia will pay stakeholders an extra 0.26 euros ($0.36) per share on top of the annual dividend of 0.11 euros for last year, the company said. The additional payment is due to the 5.4-billion-euro sale of Nokia’s mobile phone unit to Microsoft, which closed on Friday. Nokia also said it planned to give at least 0.11 euros as dividend for 2014 and start a 1.25-billion-euro share repurchase programme.
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