Microsoft has at last announced that its acquisition of Nokia’s Devices division will close this Friday, April 25. Originally expected to close last quarter, the $7.1 billion purchase was delayed pending regulatory approval.
The terms of the sale have been changed somewhat. Nokia’s Web and social media presence—which today primarily promotes its smartphones—will be managed by Microsoft for up to a year. Originally, employees at Nokia’s Chief Technology Office were to remain with Nokia; now 21 of them, working on mobile phones in China, will switch to Microsoft. Nokia will also retain its South Korean manufacturing facility rather than transferring it to Microsoft.
This seems a little surprising. While the facility in the Masan Free Export Zone was not spared from the large-scale layoffs that Nokia made in 2012, it was refitted that same year and dedicated to the production of smartphones. Microsoft did not say why it was not buying the factory.
A letter Nokia sent to its suppliers gives more information about the purchase. One recipient forwarded it to Nokia Power User; the letter says that Nokia’s Devices and Services division will become a new company named Microsoft Mobile Oy (“oy” being a shortened version of a Finnish term), which will be a wholly owned subsidiary of Microsoft.