back to article Nokia loses $1.7bn in Q1, sales chief falls overboard

Nokia's sales chief Colin Giles will depart in a shake-up of the company's commercial operation, the mobe maker announced in its earnings call today. After he clears his desk in June, 20-year veteran Giles won't be replaced, with the four regional senior VPs now reporting directly to head of markets Niklaus Savander. As the …

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Anonymous Coward

The WP8 question

Unless or until Nokia can state that the Lumia models will update to WP8, its hard to see the current smartphone lineup as a good buy.

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Joke

Lost $1.7bn? For that money you could buy a web based startup with 13 staff and no revenue.

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Anonymous Coward

Sales Chief - poor sod

The CEO unilaterally destroys overnight all value in the company and it's current product lines by going "all in" on Windows Phone - without any actual product to sell - and the Sales Chief that diligently grew sales over a 20 year career is thrown under the bus when nobody wants to buy the new Windows Phone product, or even the old ones that the CEO burned on his bonfire.

Farking marvellous - no wonder he's walking, I would too.

The CEO is a complete tool.

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Re: Sales Chief - poor sod

TBH, if I was the outgoing sales chief then I think now is a good time to sit on a big fat bed of gold and spend time with the family.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Sales Chief - poor sod

Totally agree. Been there. Granted sometimes it's the sales people who make those silly decisions. But here it was the CEOs it seems.

Seen it happen on the small scale too. :(

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Sales Chief - poor sod

I agree that Elop's decision to ditch Symbian just as it was finally maturing enough to be a serious potential rival to Android & iOS was pretty bloody silly but Nokia have had problems for years. Between some cack-handed handset designs and an internal management structure straight out of the worst US Management Guru Handbook (eg "hey, let's have more than one department working on handset designs, and what's more, let's have them compete with one another! You're guaranteed to succeed when all your employees are more concerned about out-performing their colleagues than they are helping the company outperform its rivals!") they've been heading for a nasty bump for about 7 years.

(In saying that, at least they were successful to begin with - I recall seeing similar stupidity from Siemens, who've never been anywhere near as good at making decent phones as Nokia, and whose reaction to having inadvertently produced a decent handset was to panic and junk it before anyone had time to notice...)

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Sales Chief - poor sod

Elop is the PHB ...

- http://www.dilbert.com/fast/2012-04-01/

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Re: Sales Chief - poor sod

.... a complete Microsoft Tool

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FAIL

Challenging my arse

> Elop describing the UK market as "challenging"

Or rather the UK market describing Elop's strategy as "deluded".

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Joke

Re: Challenging my arse

Nokia's WinPho7 handsets are challenging your arse? I think you must be using it wrong...

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Windows

Re: Challenging my arse

Disagree...

Rename Nokia's WinPho7 to "Izal Medicated", and you've a real challenge....

Worse than a vindaloo when you go to the loo.

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Mushroom

Desire to cut costs has killed Nokia

Elop's desire to cut costs - which on the surface makes good business sense - is having a disastrous effect now that he has no revenue, which is a direct consequence of his zeal to cut Symbian costs.

If he hadn't been so quick to burn Symbian (and also MeeGo/Maemo), he wouldn't now be faced with massive losses and still nobody is buying his precious Windows Phone.

No doubt he will continue cutting costs and selling off assets until there is essentially nothing left of the company. It looks like Elop learned one thing at business school, to keep your costs low, but didn't learn that making a profit actually matters more.

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FAIL

Re: Desire to cut costs has killed Nokia

Sales were utterly collapsing before the 'burning platforms' speech. The N8 was horribly late and, with the exception of the camera, uncompetitive with Android products in the same price range. Whether the Windows Phone strategy works or not isn't clear - but it was a better plan for Nokia than the one before.

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Meh

Re: Desire to cut costs has killed Nokia

Sales were on the decline, but they were not collapsing - that only happened after the speech which dramatically accelerated the decline. After the speech, carriers didn't want to buy Symbian stock any more - at any price. Nokia also had Belle in the wings, which is the facelift Symbian needed as well as bringing full Qt support, but this was artificially delayed having been ready in the summer and released only recently.

Nokia did everything they could to undermine Symbian after the speech, which up to that point was still making a healthy contribution to the bottom line and would have continued to do so had Nokia not burned the platform so publicly and catastrophically.

Nokia purposefully killed Symbian quickly in order for Microsoft to make up ground with WP, but in doing so they have broken Nokia, probably for good, as now they have precious little revenue and WP doesn't look like it's the winner they expected it to be.

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Holmes

Re: Desire to cut costs has killed Nokia

"they expected it to be."

By "they", I assume you are asserting the royal plural for the "Manchurian Candidate" at the helm of Nokia. I doubt anyone at Nokia other than Elop "expected" WP to be the success necessary to compensate for the disasterous situation Elop has foisted upon Nokia.

Actually, I doubt whether it matters at all. The MS strategy to destroy Nokia for later consumption at firesale prices through the agency of Elop is right on schedule!

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About time?

Maybe time to give Android a try eh Nokia? I for one will give serious thought to your Android offerings if they have a qwerty keyboard like the N97 et al.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: About time?

Certainly, why not - shouldn't cost too much to slap it on a few devices.

MeeGo might also stand a second chance, as would resurrecting Symbian and the Qt strategy. Get Android apps running on top of MeeGo and Symbian as a short term measure. Then get Qt running officially on Android (and also the soon to be launched Tizen OS).

Grow the Qt ecosystem everywhere - don't be precious about it. But give the premier Qt experience on your own hardware.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: About time?

The MeeGo-Harmattan Swipe UX is an absolute joy.

Any system based on the Swipe UX would sell big time - the N9 outselling Lumia even though the former was only marketed in places like Kazakhstan confirms this. The fact it would also be 100% Nokia will bring back the punters that have been driven away by Windows Phone.

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Anonymous Coward

Android? When hell freezes over

Or Elop is thrown out on his arse, which is about as likely.

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FAIL

Re: About time?

> Maybe time to give Android a try eh Nokia?

Though surely those Microsoft payments come with some obligations attached? Things like not investing in rival OS'es?

And anyway, turning around now would mean a massive loss of face, not to mention writing off all the money invested (lost) trying to make the current strategy work. A corporation cannot change its collective mind about its overall direction every other year; for Nokia now it's make or break, and unfortunately it increasingly looks like the later.

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Re: About time?

The MS deal is likely to have come with steel cables attached, rather than strings... but when things look this bad jumping ship seems like a good option. You can either jump ship, survive and deal with the consequences or go down with the MS powered ship.

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Anonymous Coward

Heading in the right direction

It was always going to take time for Elop to turn a company the size of Nokia around and he's getting there slowly. He's managed to cut costs and move out of the way a sales chief who was probably too stubborn to accept and embrace the future of mobile and tablet computing in Windows Phone 7.

It's clear that the Lumia range is selling and the Windows App store continues to grow on a weekly basis with some fantastic apps and the market share for Windows Phone can only grow and this can only help Nokia. It's clear from their numbers that they've lost a lot of money due to the almost worthless symbian platform that the previous CEO held on to for too long.

Once they've flushed all these symbian devices down the toilet and they can focus on the great Lumia range hardware and Windows smartphones then Nokia will be back in profit in no time.

It's good to see Elop is willing to shake things up and move on the deadwood in the company that's holding it back who can't see the long term vision and strategy for Nokia. Great time to buy their stock as Elop's experience and drive will ensure the company regains it's lost market share to the likes of Apple, Samsung and HTC.

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Thumb Down

Re: Heading in the right direction

I hear about Xbox hueg losses and what is this?

"sales chief too stubborn to accept and embrace the future of ... Windows Phone 7"

"great Lumia range hardware"

"deadwood in the company that's holding it back"

"almost worthless symbian platform"

"Elop's experience and drive will ensure the company regains it's lost market"

Has been copypastaed from a Microsoft talking point memo? Or maybe an investment boutique flyer?

And it's "its", not "it's"

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FAIL

Re: Heading in the right direction-

Which is down the plughole...

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Anonymous Coward

Copypasted from a Microsoft talking point memo?

No, even the Microsoft marketing folks are more subtle than this astroturfing bozo.

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Yag

Re: Heading in the right direction

heh... Too bad "anonymous coward" and "trollface" don't mix, I guess a lot of people didn't caught the obvious irony...

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Heading in the right direction

Were you paid by Nokia PR dept to write this...........??

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Heading in the right direction

Steve, is that you?

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Trollface

Re: Heading in the right direction

You do reaslise that if you don't post using your own name, you can't claim the marketing dollars, right?

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Re: Elop to burn a company

I misread that as "Elop to burn a company" 1st time. Makes more sense than what it actually says.

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Boffin

Heading straight down, more likely.

Elop's decision to act as MS mole and ram WP7 on Nokia seems to have turned a slow profit descent into a nosedive. If shareholders were smart, they would be voting for Elop to get sacked and put up someone who can either ressurrect Symbian (with Belle) or push out an Android stopgap while they get their shit together.

Switching to WinMo killed Palm, it seems that the same is happening to Nokia so they should get rid of it while they still can pull themselves out of that mess.

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Devil

Re: Heading in the right direction

I am not sure if that post was serious or sarcasm, so I don't know how to rate it. :(

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FAIL

Re: Heading in the right direction

If only you had taken the trouble to register and log in you could have used the "Joke Alert" icon and received a zillion up-votes.

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WTF?

Re: Heading in the right direction

....are you on?

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Vic
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Re: Heading in the right direction

> It's clear that the Lumia range is selling

That's not clear to me at all.

Vic.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Heading in the right direction

> It's clear that the Lumia range is selling

It's also clear that the Pope is a Hindu.

Learn to astroturf properly.

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RIP Nokia

Was nice knowing you.

Nobody wants a Windows phone, but you wouldn't be told, guess you'll learn the hard way.

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My thoughts exactly...

RIP Nokia

I and my trusty old 3210 salute you.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: RIP Nokia

Those who do want a "windows" phone (like on the of the wife's friends) actually buy an Android device. I heard this conversation downstairs: "new phone... don't like Apple... I'm happy with Windows". Aha! I though, now I'll finally get to see a WP7 device.

Hurried downstairs to "get some coffee" only to discover that the gadget in question was a top-of-the line HTC Android...

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@Fibbles

I too have fond memories of my earlier Nokia phones. I loves my faithful 6210 with its cutting edge IR port for my Psion Revo. I remember the bold designs Nokia came out with in its first launch of the N-series, the N90 that changed from a clamshell phone into a camcorder (sort of).

And now? We have an endless series of the same boring black square slabs that every other manufacturer is cranking out, except with an OS that Joe Public doesn't understand and techies do not like.

Fuck Elop and his reinvented Nokia.

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Meh

Featureless phones ?

I have used Windows Phone 7 for a number of weeks and it is a slick, pleasant experience. However, when up against Android and Apple, the hardware and software need to be a compellingly better experience than the competition, and they simply aren't at the moment.

Here's a good example of just one area it falls short. Want to watch BBC iPlayer on a Windows Phone ? Well you can't, because Windows Phone 7 does not have Flash support or HLS, and there is no word from either the BBC or Microsoft about when there will be support and in what form it will take. That is just one example of the issues consumers face.

When you are trying to beat the competition, you are not going to manage it when your products are not as capable as others on the market, no matter how slick your OS may be.

I have just taken delivery of an HTC One X last week, which is where the leading Android experience is at currrently, and it simply does everything you could want and does it very well too. Until Nokia and Microsoft get their heads round the fact that competing in the Smartphone market will require them to offer something better than the competition, rather than targetting the middle to low end of the market, then they are doomed to fail.

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FAIL

Re: Featureless phones ?

Don't forget the stupid issue with sd cards and zune software. Android wins hands down.

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Pint

Re: Featureless phones ?

I've got an HTC X One too and quite like it. I like the larger screen, although the image of holding Ghetto Blasters on ones shoulders came to mine. The only issue I have is its bluetooth and my car's don't seem to get along and I don't know why. Still, it connects to the earpiece, so a livable downside (ie this is not a strong enough reason to return it).

I've only seem one WP7 in the wild -- my niece's phone last year! Couldn't believe it. I played with it for a bit before handing it back. However, early this year when I saw that my niece had an HTC with Android. I asked her what happened to her old phone and she said it's now her backup phone and she replaced it with an Android one because it didn't have enough software. I didn't ask what specific software so not sure. So there you go -- the only WP7 in the wild I've seen and it got ditched after 6 months.

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Joke

Ghetto Blasters?

God, your sooooooo '90's

Theyre called a "Third World Briefcase" in this century

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jai
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blame?

Nokia blamed "lower seasonal demand for our feature phones

It's a bit rich to put blame on "lower seasonal demand" - what that means is that the competition's phone where better and more inline with what the customers wanted. And Nokia can only blame themselves for that, not the general phone-buying public.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: blame?

It also means that Q2 is likely to be even worse as Nokia won't have the advantage of any "seasonal demand" even if it was low this year, plus Symbian and feature phone sales will have eroded even further.

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Anonymous Coward

You mis-parsed that marketing-speak...

"Lower seasonal demand for our feature phones" simply means "Nobody wanted to buy our phones, even at Christmastime".

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Re: blame?

It's going to be one hell of a long season for Nokia!

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Anonymous Coward

I just love watching train wrecks!

Bring out the popcorn!

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Meh

Re: I just love watching train wrecks!

agree, but sad the same time.

A lot of so called analysts say don't write nokia off yet, and I really hope they are correct in the long run.

On the flip side, nokia may have one too many wounds to carry on fighting.

I however would like to see nokia be number one again.

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