There was an immeasurable distance between the quick and the dead: they did not seem to belong to the same species; and it was strange to think that but a little while before they had spoken and moved and eaten and laughed - W. Somerset Maugham
FINNISH PHONE MAKER Nokia showed signs of recovery today, posting a €439m fourth quarter profit.
The struggling firm revealed on Thursday that it made a fourth quarter profit of €439m, beating analyst expectations, from sales of its Nokia Lumia 920 smartphone and popular Asha feature phone range. Nokia said that it sold 4.4 million smartphones and 9.3 million Asha phones in the fourth quarter.
The firm also said that it sold 2.2 million Symbian devices, but said that the Nokia Pureview 808 would be the last device to run its homegrown OS.
It said in its report, "During our transition to Windows Phone through 2012, we continued to ship devices based on Symbian. The Nokia 808 Pureview, a device which showcases our imaging capabilities and which came to market in mid-2012, was the last Symbian device from Nokia."
While its Lumia sales are clearly on the up, the firm is still struggling to attract customers to Windows Phone in the US, with just 700,000 Lumia devices sold during the quarter. However, this figure represents an increase from 300,000 sold in the third quarter.
These figures don't mean that everything is rosy for the company, though, not by a long shot. Nokia's previous 2012 losses made for some unnerving annual figures, such as the fact that its smartphone sales were down 66 percent year-on-year with overall phone shipments down 24 percent. Nokia posted an operating loss of over €2.3bn for 2012, with revenues down 22 percent compared to 2011.
Despite its strong fourth quarter performance, Nokia said today that it will not to pay out a dividend for 2012.
"Nokia's [fourth quarter] financial performance combined with this dividend proposal further solidifies the company's strong liquidity position," the company said.
Still, Nokia CEO Stephen Elop remained his usual jolly self following the release of the firm's financial results, saying that the company will continue to fight to improve its finances.
He said, "We are very encouraged that our team's execution against our business strategy has started to translate into financial results. Most notably we are pleased that Nokia Group reached underlying operating profitability in the fourth quarter and for the full year 2012.
"While the first half of 2012 was difficult for Nokia Group, in Q4 2012 we strengthened our financial position, improved our underlying operating margin in Devices & Services, and introduced the HERE brand to expand our mapping and location experiences.
"We remain focused on moving through our transition, which includes continuing to improve our product competitiveness, accelerate the way we operate and manage our costs effectively. All of these efforts are aimed at improving our financial performance and delivering more value to our shareholders." µ
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