Bottom line: Nokia has announced plans to slash as many as 14,000 jobs and after looking at its latest quarterly results, the motive is clear. The Finnish telecommunications company's third quarter report revealed a 20 percent dip in net sales year over year, from 6.24 billion euros down to 4.98 billion euros. Profit, meanwhile, fell 69 percent to 133 million euros, down from 428 million euros during the same period a year earlier.
Nokia said its goal with the restructuring is to lower its cost base by between 800 million euros and 1.2 billion euros by the end of 2026, representing a 10-15 percent reduction in personal expenses. At least 400 million euros in savings will be realized in 2024 alone, we're told, followed by an additional 300 million euros in 2025. That would leave another 100 million euros to 500 million euros to be squeezed out in 2026.
To get there, Nokia will have to say goodbye to thousands of employees. The program is expected to bring Nokia's global headcount down to between 72,000 and 77,000 employees from the 86,000 it has today. The company expects most of the savings – and thus, cuts – to involve the mobile networks, cloud and network services, and corporate divisions.
In Q3, Nokia saw net sales dip 19 percent as 5G implementation in India leveled out, negating a previously enjoyed offset to the ongoing downturn in North America.
Nokia isn't the first to speak out about the disappointment of 5G. In August, SK Telecom argued that 5G didn't quite live up to the hype and that the 5G rollout thus far has fallen short of the technological revolution we were initially promised.
Back in February, rival telecom player Ericsson said it would be cutting 8,500 jobs as part of a similar cost-cutting measure. In its third quarter report earlier this week, Ericsson also saw sales and profit slide compared to the year-ago period.
Shares in Nokia are down just over five percent on the news as of this writing.
Image credit: Raunak Jha