NSN is open to new investors, declares Nokia CFO

Despite having to cope with a barrage of questions with regard to Nokia's Q3 financial performance, the company's CFO, Timo Ihamuotila, was keen to draw attention to fresh possibilities for its Nokia Siemens Network (NSN) JV with Siemens.

According to Ihamuotila, Nokia would be open to discussions with interested parties who could bring some additional capital to the struggling infrastructure vendor.

"There has been some unsolicited interest from different parties on NSN, and clearly as shareholders we are willing to talk to people who could bring some new assets, capital or ideas into this industry," said the CFO.

However, Ihamuotila indicated that the joint owners would not want to see NSN broken up, claiming that "both shareholders want to provide an environment where the NSN management can currently concentrate on executing the strategy and improve the results."

Industry watchers have previously commented that private equity firms have already approached Nokia and Siemens concerning NSN, given that both owners of the JV would consider exiting the partnership if the terms were satisfactory.

Last week, NSN reported that it had been able to narrow its losses during the third-quarter to €282 million, compared with a €1.11 billion loss a year earlier. NSN management stated that they should be able to reach a profit in the fourth quarter this year, helped from the acquisition of part of Motorola's network business, which will boost its position in regions where profit margins tend to be high, like the US and Japan.

NSN, which is fighting strong competition from Huawei and ZTE, managed to report a third quarter sales increase of 7 per cent from a year ago to €2.94 billion, slightly above analysts' average forecast of €2.91 billion.

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