Microsoft and Nokia clear all remaining hurdles in mobile unit sale
It took a bit longer than anticipated -- regulatory hurdles require a lot of jumping and maneuvering, especially when it's on a global scale -- but just as originally planned, Microsoft now owns substantially all of Nokia's Devices & Services business (essentially the company's mobile division). The transaction also includes an agreement to license patents to Microsoft, Nokia announced.
The final price is a little more than the original €5.44 billion (around $7.2 billion) announced back in September, as it was subject to potential price adjustments, Nokia said. However, the total amount won't be revealed until next week when Nokia announces its first quarter financial results.
"Today we welcome the Nokia Devices and Services business to our family. The mobile capabilities and assets they bring will advance our transformation," said Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella. "Together with our partners, we remain focused on delivering innovation more rapidly in our mobile-first, cloud-first world."
Former Nokia chief Stephen Elop will serve as executive vice president of the Microsoft Devices Group, which will oversee an expanded devices business that includes Lumia smartphones and tablets, Nokia mobile phones, Xbox hardware, Surface, Perceptive Pixel (PPI) products, and accessories.
It will be interesting to see what Microsoft does with this transaction. Microsoft is woefully behind both iOS and Android in mobile market share, though the roll out of Windows Phone 8.1 with Cortana voice assistant software along with new devices could help boost Microsoft's position, especially as BlackBerry continues to struggle.