Nokia announces 10-year brand-licensing deal

Helsinki, May 18

Nokia said it has signed an exclusive 10-year licensing deal with Finnish company HMD Global Oy to create Nokia-branded phones and tablets, manufactured by a subsidiary of Taiwan’s Foxconn.

Once the world’s biggest maker of mobile phones, Nokia was wrong footed by the rise of smartphones and sold its entire handset business to Microsoft in 2014.

It, however, held on to its phone patents, and started to prepare a comeback by brand-licensing, although it has had to wait due to a non-compete deal with Microsoft.

Nokia, which currently makes most of its sales by telecom network equipment, said today it will receive royalty payments from HMD for sales of Nokia-branded mobile products, covering both brand and intellectual property rights.

“Instead of Nokia returning to manufacturing mobile phones itself, HMD plans to produce mobile phones and tablets that can leverage and grow the value of the Nokia brand in global markets,” said Ramzi Haidamus, head of Nokia’s patent unit.

Earlier today, Microsoft announced it would sell its entry-level phone assets to Foxconn’s subsidiary FIH Mobile and HMD for $350 million.

As part of that deal, HMD is buying from Microsoft the rights to use the Nokia brand on basic phones until 2024.