Microsoft Nokia Deal Done; Software Giant Now in Phone Business

Image: Microsoft Nokia Deal Done; Software Giant Now in Phone Business

Monday, 28 Apr 2014 10:12 AM

By Clyde Hughes

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Nokia has completed its $7.52 billion sale of its devices and services business to Microsoft, excluding two plants in India and South Korea, as the software giant attempts to remake itself.

The Microsoft/Nokia deal was first announced in September as Microsoft attempts to transition from a software maker to a company that delivers services on any kind of Internet-connected gadget.

Nokia said in a statement that total transaction price may be higher than the $7.52 billion or 5.33 billion euros previously announced depending on the closing balance sheets.

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"Additionally, as is customary for transactions of this size, scale and complexity, Nokia and Microsoft made certain adjustments to the scope of the assets originally planned to transfer," said Nokia.

"These adjustments included Nokia's manufacturing facilities in Chennai in India and Masan in the Republic of Korea not transferring to Microsoft. These adjustments have no impact on the material deal terms of the transaction and Nokia will be materially compensated for any retained liabilities," the statement continued.

Nokia said the India plant faced an asset freeze by that country's tax authorities but Nokia would produce mobile devices there for Microsoft as part of its agreement. Nokia added in its statement that it planned to close the South Korea facility, affecting some 200 employees.

Nokia said in its statement that part of its leadership team – Stephen Elop, Jo Harlow, Juha Putkiranta, Timo Toikkanen, and Chris Weber – have transferred to Microsoft.

Microsoft said in a September statement the deal was originally struck in hopes that the success of the Nokia's Lumia smartphones would help the software company ramp up its share and profit in the mobile device market through "faster innovation, increased synergies, and unified branding and marketing."

"It's a bold step into the future – a win-win for employees, shareholders and consumers of both companies," Steven Ballmer, then Microsoft's chief executive officer, said of the deal in a statement. Ballmer retired from Microsoft in February.

"Bringing these great teams together will accelerate Microsoft's share and profits in phones, and strengthen the overall opportunities for both Microsoft and our partners across our entire family of devices and services," Ballmer continued.

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