Nokia is making a comeback; In the May of 2016, Microsoft decided to sell the feature phone division at Microsoft Mobile, and described it as an “unwanted extra.”
The sale has a complicated structure – while the factories and the 4,500 employees who were working in said factories are now working for FIH Mobile, a subsidiary of Foxconn; the brand name of ‘Nokia’ was sold off to HMD Global Oy, a Finnish company formed as a holding company for the Nokia brand.
Something to note: Microsoft specifically sold the feature phone division; now, HMD Global Oy wants to jump into the smartphone business with the Nokia brand – and Foxconn will be manufacturing these devices.
HMD Global Oy is a new company – after all, it was formed only six months ago – but the employees within include several of the Microsoft employees who jumped ship to continue the Nokia journey. The HMD leadership team consists of two former Microsoft Mobile employees.
The CEO of HMD Global, Arto Nummela, joined Nokia in 1994 and then worked at Microsoft Mobile after the Nokia acquisition.
HMD is headquartered in Helsinki, Finland and most of the staff is made up of veterans from Nokia – it’s the same people who devoted their expertise to Nokia over the past few decades.
The news of Nokia making a comeback isn’t new – it was expected of them to release some details about their plans by the end of 2016, and they have done exactly that.
HMD’s announcement today show us a better future for the company – a future where consumers can have the same Nokia quality that they have come to expect, but with Google’s Android ecosystem on top.
While the sale of HMD was still under legal process, Microsoft’s last decision with the feature phone business was was to release a $37 feature phone in India.
These are some interesting times we are living in – you can read the full press release at HMD Global’s website, it puts out quite a bit of detail.