Rating: Microsoft probably aiming to do a Sendo on Nokia
What kind of madness is this? Nokia is in dire straights – nobody disputes that. It has just been forced to announce that another 10,000 jobs will have to go at Nokia. The reason is blatantly obvious. Nokia is in the business of making mobile phones. What does the market demand at the moment? Android handsets – that’s what people want. Let’s face it, there’s no way in the world that Apple is going to licence iOS to Nokia which is the only other way out.Android is the only way. So how does the company react? Offer Android handsets? No, it only decides to sell its stake in one of the last and only really profitable parts of its business – luxury handset vendor, Vertu.The wires are alive with rumours but it seems that Nokia has probably sold a 90 per cent stake in the Vertu business for around $ 200 million to VC company – EQT VI.
Why is this madness? Well, for the very reason that Nokia is plummeting fast. Nobody really wants a mobile phone based on Windows Phone 7.5 (W7 Mango).
Not because the OS per se is rubbish (which it isn’t) but because there are not enough apps for Mango.
In Vertu’s case, it doesn’t matter. The company is selling diamond encrusted mobile phones for as much as $312,000 a shot.
It doesn’t matter which OS such handsets run as long as they actually function, then the purchasers don’t care.
So the fact that Nokia is lumbered with WP7 doesn’t matter to Vertu. The company is based in Church Crookham, Hampshire and has benefited from growth in developing Asian markets.
What does Perry Oosting, Vertu’s CEO, hint to the Daily Telegraph? Only that Vertu is plotting to follow the same disastrous path as Nokia and migrate from Symbian to WP7.5.
“We’ve been very successful on one operating platform. That doesn’t mean we stick with that,” he told the newspaper here.
So what are the analysts saying? Easy. After parachuting Stephen Elop into Nokia and thoroughly destroying its share price, Microsoft is in a good postion to buy Nokia outright.
Quelle suprise! Isn’t that exactly how it behaved when it took a stake in British based handset manufacturer, Sendo? Um, yes it is.