Nokia Corporation[8] (Finnish: Nokia Oyj, Finnish pronunciation: [ˈnokiɑ], UK /ˈnɒkiə/, US /ˈnkiə/), stylised as NOKIA, is a Finnish multinational communications and information technology company, founded in 1865. Nokia is headquartered in Espoo, Uusimaa, in the greater Helsinki metropolitan area.[5] In 2014, Nokia employed 61,656 people across 120 countries, did business in more than 150 countries and reported annual revenues of around €12.73 billion.[7] Nokia is a public limited-liability company listed on the Helsinki Stock Exchange and New York Stock Exchange.[10] It is the world's 274th-largest company measured by 2013 revenues according to the Fortune Global 500.[11] The company is a component of the Euro Stoxx 50 stock market index.[12]

The company has had various industries in its 150-year history, originally founded as a pulp mill, and currently focuses on large-scale telecommunications infrastructures, and technology development and licensing.[13] Nokia is also a major contributor to the mobile telephony industry, having assisted in development of the GSM and LTE standards, and was, for a period, the largest vendor of mobile phones in the world. Nokia's dominance also extended into the smartphone industry through its Symbian platform, but was soon overshadowed by competitors. Nokia eventually entered into a pact with Microsoft in 2011 to exclusively use its Windows Phone platform on future smartphones. Its mobile phone business was eventually bought by Microsoft in an overall deal totaling €5.44 billion (US $7.17 billion).[14][15] Stephen Elop, Nokia's former CEO, and several other executives joined the new Microsoft Mobile subsidiary of Microsoft as part of the deal, which was completed on April 25, 2014.[16]

Since the sale of its mobile phone business, Nokia began to focus more extensively on its telecommunications infrastructure business, marked by the divestiture of its Here Maps division, its foray in virtual reality, and the acquisitions of French telecommunications company Alcatel-Lucent and digital health maker Withings in 2016.[17][18]



Nokia has a long history, dating back to 1865 when Fredrik Idestam, a mining engineer, created a pulp mill near the town of Tampere, Finland (then in the Russian Empire). A second pulp mill was created in 1868 near the town of Nokia, itself nearby Tampere. In 1871, Idestam together with friend Leo Mechelin formed a shared company and called it Nokia, after the town of the second pulp mill. For the next 90 years, Nokia on its own would be a forest and power industry company, with activities such as electricity generation.

In 1922, Nokia was jointly-owned with a trio partnership with Finnish Cable Works (Suomen Kaapelitehdas, formed in 1917) and Finnish Rubber Works (Suomen Gummitehdas, formed in 1898). Finnish Cable Works manufactured telephone and electrical cables, whereas Finnish Rubber Works created galoshes and other rubber products.


In 1967, the three companies Nokia Aktiebolag (Nokia Company), Suomen Kaapelitehdas and Suomen Kumitehdas (by then renamed from Suomen Gummitehdas) merged and created the new Nokia Corporation, the current form of the modern communications company. Nokia Corporation now boasted many industries including rubber, forestry, cable, electricity and electronics. In the 1970s, the newly formed conglomerate started entering the networking and radio industry. Nokia also started making military equipment for Finland's defence forces (Puolustusvoimat), such as the Sanomalaite M/90 communicator in 1983, and the M61 gas mask from the 1960s. The company was also making professional mobile radios, telephone switches, capacitors, chemicals and personal computers under the name MikroMikko (by the Nokia Data division) from 1981 to 1991, the predecessor of Fujitsu Siemens. In 1979, Nokia went into a joint venture with television maker Salora, to create Mobira, which would lay out the foundation of Nokia's future mobile phone division. In 1981, Mobira launched the Nordic Mobile Telephone (NMT) service, the world's first international cellular network and the first to allow international roaming. Then in 1982, Mobira launched the Mobira Senator (Talkman) car phone, which can be considered as Nokia's first mobile phone. At that time, though, Nokia had no interest at all in mobile phones and the executive board considered mobile telephones as "James Bond"-gadgets. It is only due to the Salo, Finland-based Salora-Mobira that the idea was pushed through.

In 1987, Finnish Cable Works discontinued production of cables at its Helsinki factory, effectively ending the sub-company. Nokian Tyres (Nokian Renkaat), a tyre producer that was originally formed as a division of Finnish Rubber Works in 1932, split away from Nokia Corporation in 1988. Two years later in 1990, Finnish Rubber Works followed suit. This allowed Nokia Corporation to solely focus on communications. Jorma Ollila became CEO in 1992.


Nokia's first fully portable mobile phone (after the Mobira Senator car phone of 1982) was the Mobira Cityman 900 in 1987. Nokia assisted in the development of the GSM mobile standard in the 1980s, and developed the first GSM network with Siemens (predecessor of Nokia Siemens Network). The world's first GSM call was made by Finnish prime minister Harri Holkeri on July 1, 1991 using Nokia equipment, on the 900 MHz band network built by Nokia and operated by Radiolinja. In November 1992 the Nokia 1011 was the first commercially available mobile phone. In 1998 Nokia overtook Motorola and became the best-selling mobile phone brand.

Until the new millennium, Nokia had a few remaining industries other than the core mobile phones, such as CRT displays for PCs (until 2000, acquired by ViewSonic), DSL modems, digital and analog set-top boxes, PC equipment and cards, and televisions. Most of these were gradually ended in the 2000s.

Nokia's mobile phones were incredibly successful in Europe, Africa, Asia and Oceania. Nokia were also one of the pioneers of mobile gaming, due to the popularity of Snake, which was pre-loaded on many products. The 3310 is one of the company's most well-known products, and is noted today for its toughness. Nokia created the best-selling mobile phone of all time, the Nokia 1100 in 2003.

Nokia's first camera phone was the 7650, and its successor 3600/3650 was the first camera phone in the North American market. The company would go on to become a successful camera phone maker: the N93 in 2006 had an advanced camera with a twistable design that could switch between clamshell and a camcorder-like position; the N95 had a high-resolution 5-megapixel flash camera; N82 featured a xenon flash; N8 had a high resolution 12-megapixel sensor; the 808 PureView had a 41-megapixel sensor; the Lumia 920 implemented advanced PureView technologies. Nokia's first imaging patent was filed back in 1994, which they revealed in 2013.

In 2003, Nokia had an attempt to break into the portable gaming market by releasing the N-Gage. The device however was a failure, and failed to challenge dominant Nintendo.

Nokia's Symbian S60-based high-end phones and smartphones achieved popularity in the mid- to late-2000s. For many years the smartphone platform was leading in Europe and Asia (but lagged behind Windows Mobile, Palm OS and BlackBerry in North America).[19][20] One notable successful device was the highly advanced N95, another was the metallic E71 in 2008.

Later on, competition heated up, and the Symbian platform that Nokia were using was quickly becoming outdated and difficult for developers after the advent of iPhone OS and Android. To counter this, Nokia started to develop a successor, MeeGo, in 2010. However, in February 2011 Nokia's new CEO Stephen Elop made a partnership with Microsoft to use Windows Phone as its primary operating system, and relegate Symbian to a lower position. Although the MeeGo-based N9 was met with a highly positive reception in 2011, Nokia decided not to continue the MeeGo project and solely focus on its Microsoft partnership. After the announcement of the Microsoft deal, Nokia's market share deteriorated because operators didn't want to purchase Symbian devices when they realized Nokia's focus and attention would be elsewhere. Nokia's first Windows Phone flagship was the Lumia 800, which arrived in November 2011. The falling sales in 2011, which were not being improved too much with the Lumia line in 2012, led to consecutive quarters of huge losses. By mid-2012, with the company's stock price falling below $2, Nokia almost became bankrupt.[21][22]

The Lumia 920 was announced in September 2012, which was seen by the press as the first high-end Windows Phone that could challenge rivals, due to its advanced feature set. Meanwhile, the company was making gains in developing countries with its Asha range. Although Nokia's smartphone market share recovered in 2013, it was still not enough to improve the dire financial situation. The company had already been making huge losses for two years, and in September 2013 announced the sale of its mobile and devices division to Microsoft. The sale was positive for Nokia to stop further disastrous financial figures, and was also good for Microsoft's CEO Steve Ballmer, who wanted Microsoft to produce more hardware and turning it into a 'devices and services' company. The sale was completed in April 2014, with Microsoft Mobile becoming the successor to Nokia's mobile devices division.

Meanwhile, Nokia purchased Siemens' stake in the Nokia Siemens Networks joint venture in July 2013 for $2.2 billion, turning it into a wholly owned subsidiary called Nokia Solutions and Networks,[23] until being rebranded as simply Nokia Networks shortly after.[24] During Nokia's difficult period, it was its profitable networking division with Siemens where much of the income came, thus the purchase proved to be positive particularly after the sale of its mobile devices unit.[25]


After the sale of its mobile devices division, Nokia started to focus on its profitable network equipment division, Nokia Networks.[26]

In October 2014, Nokia and China Mobile signed a $970 million framework deal for delivery between 2014 and 2015.[27]

On November 17, 2014, Nokia technologies head Ramzi Haidamus disclosed that the company planned to re-enter the consumer electronics business by licensing in-house hardware designs and technologies to third-party manufacturers. Haidamus stated that the Nokia brand was "valuable" but "is diminishing in value, and that's why it is important that we reverse that trend very quickly, imminently."[28] The next day, Nokia unveiled the N1, an Android tablet manufactured by Foxconn, as its first product following the Microsoft sale.[29] Haidamus emphasized that devices released under these licensing agreements would be held to high standards in production quality, and would "look and feel just like Nokia built it."[13] Nokia CEO Rajeev Suri has stated that the company plans to re-enter the mobile phone business in this manner in 2016, following the expiration of its non-compete clause with Microsoft.[30]

According to Robert Morlino, the spokesman of Nokia Technologies, Nokia will most probably follow the brand-licensing model for its revival as the company is not in the position of making and selling mobile phones on its own due to the selling of its mobile phone division to Microsoft.[31] Nokia is taking massive steps for this comeback, evident through its hiring of software experts, testing of new products, and seeking of sales partners.[32] On July 14, 2015, CEO Rajeev Suri confirmed that the company will make a return to the mobile phones market in 2016.[33]

On July 28, 2015, Nokia announced OZO, a futuristic 360-degrees virtual reality camera, with eight 2K resolution optical image sensors. The division behind the product, Nokia Technologies, said that OZO will be the most advanced VR filmmaking platform.[34] Nokia's press release stated that OZO would be "the first in a planned portfolio of digital media solutions", so more technologic products are expected in the future.[35] The OZO was fully unveiled on November 30 in Los Angeles. The OZO will retail for $60,000 and is designed for professional use.[36]

On April 14, 2015, Nokia confirmed that it was in talks with the French telecommunications equipment company Alcatel-Lucent regarding a potential merger.[37] The next day, Nokia officially announced that it had agreed to purchase Alcatel-Lucent for €15.6 billion in an all-stock deal.[38] The acquisition aims to create a stronger competitor to the rival firms Ericsson and Huawei, whom Nokia and Alcatel-Lucent had surpassed in terms of total combined revenue in 2014. The acquisition is expected to be completed in early 2016, and is subject to regulatory approval. At completion, Nokia shareholders will hold 66.5% while Alcatel-Lucent shareholders will hold 33.5% of the new combined company. The Bell Labs division will be maintained, but the Alcatel-Lucent brand will be replaced by Nokia.[38][39] As of October 2015, following approval of the deal by China's Ministry of Commerce, the merger awaits approval by French regulators.[40] Despite the initial intents of selling the submarine cable division separately, Alcatel-Lucent later declared that it would not sell this strategic business unit separately.[41] This will provide Nokia with a good hold over the global internet connection business after the completion of the acquisition. Supporting his move further, Nokia's CEO said that the acquisition will ensure greater scopes for Nokia to engage in upcoming 5G revolution.[42] In November 2015, Nokia announced it expects to complete its transaction to acquire a majority share in Alcatel-Lucent in early 2016.[43] The merger was made effective on January 14, 2016.[44]

On August 3, 2015, Nokia announced that it had reached a deal to sell its Here digital maps division to a consortium of three German automakers — BMW, Daimler AG and Volkswagen Group — for €2.8 billion.[45] The deal was made effective on December 3, 2015.[46]

On April 26, 2016, Nokia announced its plans to acquire Withings for US$191 million, propelling the company into the connected health market.[47] The acquisition was complete as of May 31, 2016, with Withings having been absorbed into a new unit from Nokia Technologies.[48]

On May 18, 2016, Microsoft announced the sale of the Nokia-branded featurephone division to FIH Mobile, a division of Foxconn, and HMD, a new company in Finland.[49] The two will be working together to create Nokia-branded devices.[50] The deal is expected to close in June 2016. Nokia will be providing brand and patent licensing to HMD, and will take a seat on the board of directors of the company.[51]

In June 2016, Nokia signed a 1.36 billion euro ($1.5 bln) one-year framework deal with China Mobile. China Mobile is Nokia's largest customer in China.[52]


Nokia is a public limited-liability company listed on the Helsinki and New York stock exchanges.[10] Nokia played a very large role in the economy of Finland.[53][54] It is an important employer in Finland and works with multiple local partners and subcontractors.[56] Nokia contributed 1.6% to Finland's GDP, and accounted for about 16% of Finland's exports in 2006.[58]

Nokia currently comprises four business groups.

Nokia Networks

Nokia Networks (previously known as Nokia Siemens Networks (NSN) and Nokia Solutions and Networks (NSN)) is a multinational data networking and telecommunications equipment company headquartered in Espoo, Finland. It is the world's fourth-largest telecoms equipment manufacturer measured by 2011 revenues (after Ericsson, Huawei and Alcatel-Lucent).[59] It has operations in around 150 countries.[61]

The NSN brand identity was launched at the 3GSM World Congress in Barcelona in February 2007 as a joint venture between Nokia (50.1%) and Siemens (49.9%), but is now a wholly owned subsidiary of Nokia.[63] It provides wireless and fixed network infrastructure, communications and networks service platforms, as well as professional services to operators and service providers.[65] It focuses on GSM, EDGE, 3G/W-CDMA, LTE and WiMAX radio access networks; core networks with increasing IP and multiaccess capabilities and services.

In July 2013, Nokia bought back all shares in Nokia Siemens Networks for a sum of US$2.21 billion and renamed it to Nokia Networks.[66]

Nokia Technologies

Nokia Technologies develops and licenses innovations and the Nokia brand.[67]

Nokia Technologies consists of an advanced development team. The development is done in wide areas from imaging, sensing, wireless connectivity, power management and advanced materials. Other areas are the expansion of IP licensing program.

Nokia Technologies also provides public participation in its development through a program Invent with Nokia.[68]

In November 2014, Nokia Technologies launched N1, an Android Lollipop tablet manufactured by Foxconn, as its first product following the Microsoft sale.[29]


Nokia bought 80% shares of the company and took over the management control of the company.

Nokia Bell Labs

Bell Laboratories became a subsidiary of Nokia Corporation after the takeover of Alcatel-Lucent. It was subsequently rebranded to Nokia Bell Labs.

Corporate affairs

Nokia officially confirmed their comeback into smartphone business through the brand licensing route. This way, Nokia will do the designing and a third party company called HMD takes care of the manufacturing. More about it here.

Corporate governance

The control and management of Nokia is divided among the shareholders at a general meeting and the Nokia Leadership Team (left),[69] under the direction of the board of directors (right).[70] The chairman and the rest of the Nokia Leadership Team members are appointed by the board of directors. Only the Chairman of the Nokia Leadership Team can belong to both the board of directors and the Nokia Leadership Team. The board of directors' committees consist of the Audit Committee,[11] the Personnel Committee[11] and the Corporate Governance and Nomination Committee.[11][11]

The operations of the company are managed within the framework set by the Finnish Companies Act,[11] Nokia's Articles of Association[8] and Corporate Governance Guidelines,[11] and related board of directors adopted charters.

Nokia Leadership Team[69]
Rajeev Suri (Chairman), b. 1967
President and CEO since 1 May 2014
Joined Nokia in 1995

Samih Elhage
Executive Vice President and Chief Financial and Operating Officer of Nokia Networks
Joined Nokia Networks 2012
Ramzi Haidamus, b.
President of Nokia Technologies
Joined Nokia in 2014
Timo Ihamuotila, b. 1966
Executive Vice President and Group Chief Financial Officer
With Nokia 1993–1996, rejoined 1999, Nokia Leadership Team member since 2007
Board of directors[70]
Risto Siilasmaa (Chairman), b. 1966
Board member since 2008, Chairman of the board of directors since 3 May 2012
Chairman of the Corporate Governance and Nomination Committee
Founder and Chairman of F-Secure Corporation
Jouko Karvinen (Vice chairman), b. 1957
Board member since 3 May 2011, Chairman of the Audit Committee, Member of the Corporate Governance and Nomination Committee
CEO of Stora Enso Oyj
Vivek Badrinath, b. 1969

Deputy Chief Executive Officer, Accor Group
Bruce Brown, b. 1958
Board member since 3 May 2012, Member of the Personnel Committee
Chief Technology Officer of Procter & Gamble
Elizabeth Doherty, b. 1957
Board member since May 2013
independent director
Elizabeth Nelson, b. 1960
Board member since 3 May 2012, Member of the Audit Committee
Independent Corporate Advisor
Kari Stadigh, b. 1955
Board member since 3 May 2011, Member of the Personnel Committee
Group CEO and President of Sampo plc

Former corporate officers

Chief executive officersChairmen of the board of directors[11]
Björn Westerlund1967–1977 Lauri J. Kivekäs1967–1977 Simo Vuorilehto1988–1990
Kari Kairamo1977–1988Björn Westerlund 1977–1979Mika Tiivola1990–1992
Simo Vuorilehto1988–1992Mika Tiivola1979–1986Casimir Ehrnrooth 1992–1999
Jorma Ollila1992–2006Kari Kairamo1986–1988Jorma Ollila1999–2012
Olli-Pekka Kallasvuo 2006–2010
Stephen Elop 2010–2014


Nokia is a public limited liability company and is the oldest company listed under the same name on the Helsinki Stock Exchange, beginning in 1915.[78] Nokia has had a secondary listing on the New York Stock Exchange since 1994.[10][78] Nokia shares were delisted from the London Stock Exchange in 2003, the Paris Stock Exchange in 2004, the Stockholm Stock Exchange in 2007 and the Frankfurt Stock Exchange in 2012.[12] Due to the acquisition of Alcatel-Lucent in 2015, Nokia listed its shares again on the Paris Stock Exchange and was included in the CAC 40 index on 6 January 2016.[12]

In 2007, Nokia had a market capitalisation of €110 billion; by July 17, 2012 this had fallen to €6.28 billion; by 23 February 2015, the market cap had increased to €26.07 billion.

Corporate culture

Nokia's official corporate culture manifesto, The Nokia Way, emphasises the speed and flexibility of decision-making in a flat, networked organization.[81]

The official business language of Nokia is English. All documentation is written in English, and is used in official intra-company spoken communication and e-mail.

In May 2007, Nokia redefined its values after initiating a series of discussions worldwide as to what the new values of the company should be. Based on the employee suggestions, the new values were defined as: Engaging You, Achieving Together, Passion for Innovation and Very Human.[81]

In August 2014, Nokia redefined its values after the sale of its Devices business. The new values were defined with the key words Respect, Achievement, Renewal and Challenge.


The Nokia House was the head office building of Nokia Corporation, located in Keilaniemi, Espoo, just outside Helsinki, the capital of Finland. The two southernmost parts of the building were built in the early 1990s and the third, northernmost part was built in 2000. Around 5000 employees work in the premises.

In December 2012, Nokia announced that it had sold its head office building to Finland-based Exilion for €170 million and was leasing it back on a long term basis.[12]

The building was sold to Microsoft as part of the sale of the mobile phone business in April 2014. The building was renamed to Microsoft Talo.[12]

After the sale, Nokia has its headquarters in Karaportti, Espoo, Finland.[12]



NSN's provision of intercept capability to Iran

In 2008, Nokia Siemens Networks, a joint venture between Nokia and Siemens AG, reportedly provided Iran's monopoly telecom company with technology that allowed it to intercept the Internet communications of its citizens.[89] The technology reportedly allowed Iran to use deep packet inspection to read and even change the content of everything from "e-mails and Internet phone calls to images and messages on social-networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter". The technology "enables authorities to not only block communication but to monitor it to gather information about individuals, as well as alter it for disinformation purposes,".

During the post-election protests in Iran in June 2009, Iran's Internet access was reported to have slowed to less than a tenth of its normal speeds, and experts suspected this was due to the use of the interception technology.[90]

In July 2009, Nokia began to experience a boycott of their products and services in Iran. The boycott was led by consumers sympathetic to the post-election protest movement and targeted at those companies deemed to be collaborating with the regime. Demand for handsets fell and users began shunning SMS messaging.[91]

The joint venture company, Nokia Siemens Networks, asserted in a press release that it provided Iran only with a 'lawful intercept capability' "solely for monitoring of local voice calls". "Nokia Siemens Networks has not provided any deep packet inspection, web censorship or Internet filtering capability to Iran," it said.[93]

Lex Nokia

In 2009, Nokia heavily supported a law in Finland that allows companies to monitor their employees' electronic communications in cases of suspected information leaking.[94] Contrary to rumors, Nokia denied that the company would have considered moving its head office out of Finland if laws on electronic surveillance were not changed.[95] The Finnish media dubbed the law Lex Nokia because it was implemented as a result of Nokia's pressure.

The law was enacted, but with strict requirements for implementation of its provisions. Until February 2013, no company had used its provisions. On 25 February the Office of Data Protection Ombudsman confirmed that city of Hämeenlinna had recently given the required notice.[96]

Nokia–Apple patent dispute

In October 2009, Nokia filed a lawsuit against Apple Inc. in the U.S. District Court of Delaware claiming that Apple infringed on 10 of its patents related to wireless communication including data transfer.[97] Apple was quick to respond with a countersuit filed in December 2009 accusing Nokia of 11 patent infringements. Apple's General Counsel, Bruce Sewell went a step further by stating, "Other companies must compete with us by inventing their own technologies, not just by stealing ours." This resulted in an ugly spat between the two telecom majors with Nokia filing another suit, this time with the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC), alleging Apple of infringing its patents in "virtually all of its mobile phones, portable music players and computers."[98] Nokia went on to ask the court to ban all U.S. imports of the Apple products including the iPhone, Mac and the iPod. Apple countersued by filing a complaint with the ITC in January 2010.[97]

In June 2011, Apple settled with Nokia and agreed to an estimated one time payment of $600 million and royalties to Nokia.[99] The two companies also agreed on a cross-licensing patents for some of their patented technologies.[100][101]

Alleged tax evasion in India

Nokia's Indian subsidiary has been charged with non-payment of TDS and transgressing transfer pricing norms in India.[103] The unpaid TDS of 30 billion, accrued during a course of six years, was due to royalty paid by the Indian subsidiary to its parent company.[104]

  • History of Nokia
  • Jolla – a company started by former Nokia employees which develops Linux Sailfish OS, a continuation of Linux MeeGo OS.
  • Twig Com – originally Benefon, a historical mobile phone manufacturer started by former Nokia people.
  • Microsoft Mobile – The re-branding of Nokia Device and Services division after acquired by Microsoft.
  • HMD global - The post-Microsoft continuation of Nokia-branded devices.