Today is the anniversary of Microsoft’s acquisition of Nokia’s mobile phone division in 2013, when the transaction value was 5.4 billion euros (more than 7 billion US dollars). This is an important moment in the history of mobile, because Nokia is a pioneer in the industry, and this acquisition allows Microsoft to obtain a large number of related patents and expertise.
Unfortunately, history tells us that in the long run, these two companies have failed to succeed on Android and iOS. Microsoft will withdraw from the smartphone field in 2017, and only launch the Android-based Surface Duo in 2020.
Nonetheless, the Microsoft/Nokia partnership and eventual transaction led to a rather weird conspiracy theory.
Nokia’s Microsoft Mole?
David Immel/Android Authority
Yes, a crazy conspiracy theory is that Nokia CEO Stephen Elop, who took over as CEO in 2010, is an insider of Microsoft. This conspiracy theory actually appeared long before Microsoft acquired Nokia.
Participants of Microsoft and Nokia MWC 2011 events (the two announced their initial partnership) Ask Elop himself Is he a Trojan horse? The Nokia CEO denied that this was indeed the case and said that the entire leadership team was part of the decision to cooperate with Microsoft.
Of course, an outsider who raised this issue may not be worthy of attention, but when several Nokia employees raised this topic in 2011, the conspiracy theory gained a foothold.
Former Microsoft employee Stephen Elop is Nokia’s chief executive officer and contributed to the 5.4 billion euro transaction.
this Globe and Mail As early as October 2011 (eight months after Nokia and Microsoft jointly developed Windows Phone), he first reported in an article entitled “Nokia employees ask, is the CEO a Microsoft mole?” These statements.
“I think Microsoft will wait for Nokia’s stock price to fall a little bit, and then buy it out,” a Nokia employee was quoted as saying at the time. Of course, this finally happened in 2013.
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“This is very suspicious to me,” another Nokia employee told the media. “If he wants to be good to the company, why would he destroy it and let the stock price fall? There are a lot of conspiracy theories here.”
“It is sometimes difficult to know where his loyalty is,” a former employee was quoted as saying at the time.
These comments were made a few months after Elop issued a statement Notorious internal memo Said that Nokia is standing on “a burning platform.” Elop joined Nokia directly from Microsoft and didn’t help things. He served as the head of business units at Microsoft, including Microsoft Office.
To be fair, Nokia is at a crossroads during this period. Its Symbian mobile operating system is a fragmented, outdated mess that didn’t consider touch from the beginning. The company is also working hard on its ambitious internal MeeGo platform, but this has been delayed several times before the first MeeGo phone was finally launched at the end of 2011.
Elop is “not a Trojan horse”
Robert Triggs/Android Authority
But is there any truth in this conspiracy theory? Well, in addition to Elop’s answer above, the best answer to this question may be found in a book written by two Finnish journalists in 2014. Operation Elop Authors: Pekka Nykänen and Merina Salminen have seen many interviews with people who have “first-hand” the Nokia incident.
“After more than a hundred interviews, we completely believe in one thing: any talk about any conspiracy behind Elop is unfounded,” the author wrote. They continued:
Elop is not a Trojan horse. Microsoft did not smuggle him to Nokia, and plans to subsequently acquire Nokia’s mobile phone business at a low price. Our interview gave no signs—no, anyway—that it was even possible.
The reporters also pointed out that this conspiracy theory is “ridiculous” because Elop was selected by Nokia’s board of directors.In addition, according to reports, several key figures within Microsoft, such as Bill Gates and future CEO Satya Nadella Express strong disagreement Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer first wanted to acquire Nokia.
However, this book does show that Elop is “in many ways one of the worst CEOs in the world, if not the worst.” The author pointed out that Nokia was valued at 29.5 billion euros the day before Elop started. When Microsoft announced the acquisition, it was 11.1 billion euros. They also criticized Elop’s single-minded approach instead of providing a multi-pronged approach to smartphones like the Samsung (providing Android, Windows Phone and Bada devices) we have seen.
A book depicting Nokia under the leadership of Stephen Elop asserts that he is a terrible CEO, not an insider of Microsoft.
Even so, some people will not let the conspiracy lie. After Microsoft sold the Nokia brand rights to HMD Global, and HMD finally cooperated with Elop, the Canadian joined the Australian operator Telstra in 2016.While working for another publication in 2017, I met Arto Nummela and HMD CEO Arto Nummela and Ask his thoughts About conspiracy theories. “I can’t comment. You have to ask Stephen Elop,” Numera said with a smile.
This is the 19th blog post in the “Did You Know” series, in which we delve into the history books of Android and consumer technology to discover important and interesting facts or events that have been forgotten over time. What do you want us to report next? Let us know in the comments.