Microsoft has completed its purchase of Nokia’s mobile phone busines. The deal between the two firms should have been completed earlier this year but it was delayed by a hold-up in regulatory approvals. The sale will see the end of production of mobile phones by Nokia.
“Today we welcome the Nokia devices and services business to our family,” said Microsoft chief executive Satya Nadella.
“The mobile capabilities and assets they bring will advance our transformation.” The Finnish company will now focus on networks, mapping services and technology development and licences.
Two Nokia plants will remain outside the deal – a manufacturing unit in Chennai, India, subject to an asset freeze by Indian tax authorities, and the Masan plant in South Korea, which it plans to shut down.
Former Nokia chief executive Stephen Elop has become executive vice president of the Microsoft devices group, in charge of Lumia smartphones and tablets, Nokia mobile phones, Xbox hardware, Microsoft Surface, and Perceptive Pixel (PPI) products.
The acquisition excludes the Finnish firm’s Chennai factory from the over USD 7.2 billion deals due to tax issues.
Nokia will continue to operate the Chennai plant, one of its largest manufacturing facilities, on a service contract for Microsoft. The factory started in 2006; more than a decade after Nokia’s India operations began in 1995.
The Chennai plant employs about 8,000 workers, equivalent to about a third of Nokia’s 25,000 staff that are being transfered to Microsoft, who will remain on the rolls of the Finnish firm. Nokia will offer a programme of support, including financial assistance, to help employees seek opportunities elsewhere