Microsoft probably shouldn’t appoint Stephen Elop as its next CEO if it wants to keep a good business relationship with the people of Finland. Finnish publication Uusi Suomi reports that some shareholders at Nokia’s general meeting on Tuesday ripped into former CEO Stephen Elop on his way out the door while describing his tenure at the company as a “triple-A flop” that put Nokia on “the road to ruin” and led to “the funeral of Nokia phones.” Things apparently got so intense that meeting chairman Manne Airaksinen asked shareholders to refrain from making personal attacks against Elop.
Elop’s tenure at Nokia has been clouded by controversy, as both the Finnish press and government have savaged him for getting a $25 million payday even though Nokia’s market share and stock price both plunged under his watch. To compound matters, Elop has also refused to give back any of the $25 million he made after selling the company’s handset division to Microsoft because he claims he’ll need all the money he can get for his impending divorce. Even before Elop sold off the company’s handset division, Nokia investors had long questioned his decision to go exclusively with Windows Phone as the company’s mobile platform and accused him of putting the company on the “road to hell.”