Nokia appoints post-merger heads for Europe, MEA

Nokia named the two executives who will head up its businesses in Europe and the Middle East and Africa (MEA) following the completion of its proposed €15.6 billion ($16.8 billion) merger with Alcatel-Lucent that it expects to close in the first half of 2016.

Markus Borchert, who already holds the position of senior VP of Europe at Nokia Networks, has been appointed head of Europe for the future combined entity, reporting to chief customer operations officer Ashish Chowdhary.

Borchert only took on the position in Europe this year. From 2012 to 2015 he served as president of the Greater China region and before that he was head of customer operations of the Greater China region.

Also reporting to Chowdhary, Amr Karim El-Leithy has been appointed head of Middle East and Africa. He is currently president for Middle East, Turkey and Africa for Alcatel-Lucent and joined the company in 2009. Prior to that he served as regional general manager for North & West Africa at IBM.

The appointments come after Nokia unveiled a new leadership team and organisational structure for the merged company on Oct. 7. Nokia has previously stressed that all proposed changes would only be implemented after the successful closing of the public exchange offer, noting that it now holds 50 per cent of the Alcatel-Lucent share capital on a fully diluted basis.

Further progress was also made on the offer this week: the French Stock Market Authority (Autorité des marchés financiers, or AMF) approved Nokia's public exchange offer for the securities of Alcatel-Lucent and delivered its visa on Nokia's offer document (note d'information).

Nokia said it expects that the exchange offer would be opened on Nov. 18, 2015, closed on Dec. 23, 2015 and settled on Jan. 7, 2016. Assuming that the exchange offer is successful, it would be reopened on Jan. 14, 2016, closed on Feb. 3, 2016 and settled on Feb. 12, 2016.

Nokia also still faces one final barrier to its planned merger with Alcatel-Lucent: approval by its own shareholders. The Finnish vendor has convened an extraordinary general meeting (EGM) for Dec. 2 and has called on shareholders to approve the issue of shares necessary to implement the combination of the two companies, amend the Articles of Association of the company, and approve changes to the make-up of the board.

For more:
- see Nokia's French stock market release
- see Nokia's MEA release
- see Nokia's Europe release

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