NSN CEO Suri still frontrunner for top job at Nokia

Rajeev Suri was again tipped to be named as Nokia's new CEO when the company reports first-quarter 2014 results on April 29, as the company also prepares to complete the sale of its devices business to Microsoft.

NSN CEO Rajeev Suri

NSN CEO, Rajeev Suri, is tipped to be the next chief of Nokia

By naming Suri as its new CEO, Nokia will end months of speculation over who will replace Stephen Elop, and what the company's post-devices strategy will be, Reuters reported, citing Finnish news reports.

The vendor is also expected to detail the amount it will pay out to shareholders in its results presentation, with a windfall payment possible thanks to the Microsoft deal.

Suri--who currently heads up Nokia Solutions and Networks (NSN)--has been consistently linked with the top job at Nokia after it was announced that Elop would move to Microsoft when its €5.4 billion ($7.4 billion) deal to acquire Nokia's devices business is concluded. Nokia's chairman, Risto Siilasmaa, has been acting CEO since the sale was announced in September 2013.

Nokia said earlier this week that it expected the bulk of the deal to be completed on Friday, April 25. The two companies originally targeted completion by the end of the first quarter, but the transaction was delayed by competition regulators--most notably Chinese antitrust authorities, which finally cleared the deal in early April

Suri's success in returning NSN to profitability by disposing of non-core assets is the driving force behind the rumours he will succeed Elop. Despite that success, Nokia is tipped to eventually drop the NSN brand, Reuters added.

Meanwhile, Microsoft's new CEO, Satya Nadella, used his first quarterly results conference call to defend a decision to drop licensing fees on the company's Windows Phone operating system, sister publication FierceWireless reported.

Nadella said the move will help to grow the Windows Phone ecosystem faster than sticking with licensing charges, and that the company wants a slice of markets including wearable devices and the Internet of Things.

For more:
- see the Reuters article
- see Nokia's press release

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