Business World

Sunday 18 February 2018

Tough call Nokia tanks 18pc on slump in sales

Kati Pohjanpalo

NOKIA shares slumped to their lowest price in 13 years after the phone maker cut its forecasts due to competition from Google and Apple.

The Finnish company said second quarter sales at the devices and services division will be "substantially" less than its projected range of €6.1bn to €6.6bn. The unit's operating margin will also fall short of a forecast range, the company said.

Nokia's shares have lost about three-quarters of their value since Apple introduced the iPhone in 2007, which suddenly made Nokia's phones look old fashioned.

Nokia chief executive Stephen Elop turned to Microsoft after deciding the company's systems couldn't keep up with the iPhone and Google's Android, the fastest-growing smartphone platform.

"They are forced to discount a lot," said Lee Simpson, an analyst at Jefferies International in London.

"No one wants these handsets.

"This is the real terrible year for these guys."

Nokia shares fell 18pc to €4.75 in Helsinki yesterday, the lowest intraday price since February 1998. The stock's decline erases the market value gains since the boom for shares of technology and internet companies in 1999 and 2000.

Nokia has declined 39pc this year, cutting the company's market value to €17.8bn.

That compares to a market value of $316bn for Apple and about $35bn for HTC, the world's largest maker of handsets using Android and Microsoft operating systems.

Irish Independent

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