Rumors again surfaced on Wednesday suggesting that Nokia plans to sell its smartphone business to Microsoft. Danske Bank, Denmark’s largest bank, issued a report to clients Wednesday morning that said Nokia will sell its smartphone division to Microsoft during the first half of 2012. Danske raised its rating on Nokia stock to Buy from Hold, and shares rose more than 3% on the news. Similar rumors first surfaced in May when an industry insider said Nokia and Microsoft were about to enter negotiations for a deal that could close before the end of 2011. Nokia immediately denied the rumor, though subsequent reports indicated that the two companies had in fact entered into discussions. “We put these rumors to rest a long time ago,” a Nokia spokesperson said in response to Danske Bank’s new report.
Nokia CEO Stephen Elop once again addressed rumors of a possible sale of Nokia’s phone business. Rumors emerged on Wednesday suggesting Samsung was preparing to bid on Nokia’s cell phone division, but Elop addressed them on Thursday while speaking to The Wall Street Journal. Elop insisted that the rumors are “completely groundless.” The CEO continued, “Nokia is not for sale.” While Elop has been steady with his message, there is of course wiggle room in his choice of words. Neither the initial report suggesting a deal had been struck with Microsoft nor the subsequent Samsung rumor suggested that Nokia, as a company, was up for sale. Instead, these reports — at least one of which is well-sourced — suggest Nokia may be shopping a portion of its business; specifically, the cell phone division, which has been spiraling downward as Nokia’s market share diminishes rapidly. More →
We reported last week that according to an industry insider, Microsoft was in talks to purchase at least a portion of Nokia’s business. Both companies denied the report, with Nokia’s CEO Stephen Elop calling the rumors “baseless”. Samsung Electronics, however, is the latest company rumored to be making a bid for Nokia, The Wall Street Journal is reporting. When reached for comment, Samsung wouldn’t speak on the rumors. Nokia also had no comment. Regarding the Nokia rumor, BGR spoke with Eldar Murtzain, who originally reported the Microsoft and Nokia news, and he indicated that Nokia wanted more money than Microsoft was offering ($28 billion instead of $19 billion). More →
Nokia CEO Stephen Elop on Wednesday responded to reports that Nokia had agreed to sell its cell phone business to Microsoft for $19 billion. BGR was first to report the rumor, sourced from industry insider Eldar Murtazin. “We have a great plan for our future, and we’re focused on executing that plan,” Elop told Bloomberg in an interview. “The rumors are all over the place. There’s no basis for them.” According to Bloomberg’s report, Elop claims not only that a deal hasn’t been reached, but that Nokia has never discussed a potential acquisition with Microsoft. More →
Apple, a company many said had repeatedly delayed the development and launch of the iPhone for fear that it might cannibalize its iPod business, is now a “mobile devices company” with a smartphone that is undoubtedly its flagship device. Chief Executive Steve Jobs and Chief Operating Officer Tim Cook have both publicly acknowledged this major transition on several occasions, including on stage while unveiling the iPad and on earnings calls while speaking with analysts. Apple is growing at an unheard of pace and stockpiling mountains of cash, all thanks to its mobile business. Personal Computers, Apple’s core business for nearly 30 years, now play second fiddle to the company’s mobile devices in terms of both revenue and mind share. On the other side of the table, old rival Microsoft is doing all it can to regain its footing in the mobile space after letting its Windows Mobile platform grow stale and moldy. Windows Mobile’s replacement, Windows Phone, is still in its infancy but early reports have suggested adoption has been slow at best. So where does Microsoft go from here? More →
According to industry insider Eldar Murtazin, Microsoft has struck a deal to purchase Nokia’s mobile phone business for $19 billion. Just two weeks ago, Murtazin — who has a proven track record and was the first to report that Nokia has struck a deal to use Microsoft’s Windows Phone platform on its smartphones — suggested that Microsoft and Nokia were about to enter closed-door meetings to negotiate a possible purchase that could close sometime before the end of this year. It could make sense: Nokia’s CEO is former Microsoft executive Stephen Elop, and the two companies have already reached a deal to create new Windows Phone devices, a dozen of which are expected to launch next year. We’ll have to see how this pans out, but a Nokia spokesperson had already addressed Murtazin’s earlier claims, saying “Eldar’s rumors are getting obviously less accurate with every passing moment.” Nokia declined to comment on Murtazin’s claim this time around. More →