What a long, strange trip it’s been, and now it’s almost over. Nokia may not be done building and selling Symbian smartphones, but at least now it can wipe its hands of Symbian development as of October 2011. Nokia and Accenture on Wednesday announced that their deal to outsource Symbian software development and support is now finalized. About 2,800 Nokia employees will move to Accenture in October when the new arrangement takes effect. “Our collaboration with Accenture allows us to meet our ongoing commitment to support our Symbian smartphone customers and continue to leverage the talent that has the deepest experience on the platform,” said Nokia’s EVP of smartphones, Jo Harlow, in a statement. “As we move our primary smartphone platform to Windows Phone, we will look to explore potential opportunities to tap this talent pool as they develop and expand their knowledge and capabilities beyond Symbian.” Nokia’s full press release can be found after the break.
Nokia and Accenture Finalize Symbian Software Development and Support Services Outsourcing Agreement
ESPOO, Finland; June 22, 2011- Nokia (NYSE: NOK) and Accenture (NYSE: ACN) have finalized an agreement for Nokia to outsource Symbian software development and support activities to Accenture. Plans of the agreement were first announced on April 27, 2011.
Under the agreement, Accenture will provide Symbian based software development and support services to Nokia through 2016. Approximately 2,800 Nokia employees located in China, Finland, India, United Kingdom and the United States, are expected to transfer to Accenture at closing, which is expected to take place in the early part of October, 2011.
“We look forward to partnering with Nokia as they continue to support Symbian and transition to the Windows Phone ecosystem,” said Marty Cole, chief executive, Accenture Communications and High Tech group. “The highly skilled group of technologists and engineers transferring to Accenture will complement our current mobility skills and enhance the breadth, depth and scale of our capabilities, allowing us to meet the growing global demand for mobility services across many industries.”
The agreement calls for Accenture to support and further develop Nokia’s Symbian platform and to become the preferred supplier to Nokia on their transition to Windows Phone. Accenture will seek opportunities to leverage transferring employee skills and capabilities to provide mobility software, business and operational services around the Windows Phone platform to Nokia and other ecosystem participants. Accenture will also seek to retrain and redeploy transferred employees.
“Our collaboration with Accenture allows us to meet our ongoing commitment to support our Symbian smartphone customers and continue to leverage the talent that has the deepest experience on the platform,” said Jo Harlow, executive vice president for Smart Devices, Nokia. “As we move our primary smartphone platform to Windows Phone, we will look to explore potential opportunities to tap this talent pool as they develop and expand their knowledge and capabilities beyond Symbian.”
Accenture will also work with Avanade, a technology service company that is majority-owned by Accenture and focuses on Microsoft technologies, to provide further services to Nokia. The definitive agreement includes customary closing conditions.