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October 18, 2012

Nokia woes continue as Lumia sales dive

Customers waiting new line of Windows Phone 8 devices mean it's another troubling quarter for Nokia

By Steve Evans

Nokia has again released a grim set of financial figures, as revenue and smartphone shipments continue to slide. The Finnish mobile phone company is also burning through cash at an alarming rate.

Across the entire Nokia Group sales came in at €7.42bn, down 17% from €8.98bn this quarter a year ago.

Nokia recorded an operating loss of €576m, an increase from the operating loss of €71m recorded during the year-ago quarter but a slight improvement on the loss of €826m recorded the previous quarter.

Sales of its flagship Lumia device dropped from 4 million the previous quarter to 2.9 million this time. That drop is not unexpected however as consumers wait for the upcoming release of the Lumia 920, which will run Microsoft’s Windows Phone 8 operating system. It is expected to be unveiled at the end of the month, with release expected during November.

Even with the expected fall in Lumia sales it is still alarming to see sales dropping off so dramatically. Compare Nokia’s Lumia sales for 2.9 million for a three-month period with that of Apple, who shipped 5 million iPhone 5s over the course of one weekend.

The cash burn at Nokia continued. At the end of this quarter the company had €3.56bn in cash, well down on the €4.19bn it had at the end of the previous quarter, meaning the company has burnt through around €600m in a three-month period.

Despite these figures CEO Stephen Elop was in confident mood about the company’s future, even though he admitted the next few quarters will be equally tough.

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"In Q3, we continued to manage through a tough transitional quarter for our smart devices business as we shared the exciting innovation ahead with our new line of Lumia products," he said. "While we continue to focus on transitioning Nokia, we are determined to carefully manage our financial resources, improve our competitiveness, return our Devices & Services business to positive operating cash flow as quickly as possible, and ultimately provide more value to our shareholders."

There was one bright spot for the company – Nokia Siemens Network’s net sales increase 3% to €3.5bn and the division pulled in an operating profit of €182m, a vast improvement on the loss of €114m recorded a year ago and the loss of 4227m recorded during the previous quarter.


More from CBR on Nokia:
Nokia unveils new Lumia 920 Windows Phone in showdown with Apple

Moody’s: Nokia’s credit rating now junk

Microsoft casts out loyal Nokia Lumia customers

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