Microsoft Buys Nokia Smartphone Division For $7.2 Billion
On Monday night Microsoft announced that it will be buying Nokia’s devices and services division for a total of $7.2 billion. A total of $2.2 billion from that sum is going towards the rights to Nokia’s patents. Since the deal, Bloomberg reported that Nokia’s shares were as much as 48 percent higher on Tuesday morning.
Nokia and Microsoft have always dreamed big—we dreamed of putting a computer on every desk, and a mobile phone in every pocket, and we’ve come a long way toward realizing those dreams,” Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer and Nokia CEO Stephen Elop said in an open letter.
Nokia Chairman Risto Siilasmaa told the Wall Street Journal that the company met with Microsoft more than 50 times to discuss a possible deal between the two companies.
With the purchase, Microsoft will take on 32,000 Nokia employees, including Elop, who previously worked at Microsoft and will assume the role of Executive Vice President of Devices & Services.
The deal seems to be a strategic one from both ends. On one hand, Nokia exclusively uses the Windows 8 Operating System, and on the other hand, Microsoft has struggled to get a cut in the mobile business with Android and the iPhone dominating the market.
Before the deal was made, Microsoft was rumored to have been gearing up to release a smartphone. When asked if the rumors were true in a conference during July last year, Ballmer didn’t exactly deny it and gave the question a run-around: “Right now we are working real hard on the Surface. That’s the focus. That’s our core. Look, we’ll see what happens. We have good partners with Nokia, HTC in the phone space. I love what we’ve got going on with the Surface. We are going to focus on Surface and our other Windows 8 tablet partners and see if we can go make something happen.”
The Nokia services buy-out comes shortly after Microsoft announced that longtime CEO Steve Ballmer would be stepping down as soon as an appropriate replacement was found. But we doubt his successor could be any crazier than Ballmer.
We’re excited to see exactly what comes out of the Microsoft-Nokia merge, but it will probably be a while before anything is actually produced.
We will continue to build the mobile phones you’ve come to love, while investing in the future—new phones and services that combine the best of Microsoft and the best of Nokia,” said Ballmer.
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