Ollila to step down as ceo end of May 2006
Olli-Pekka Kallasvuo appointed President and COO of Nokia Corporation as of October 1, 2005, and President and CEO effective June 1, 2006
Jorma Ollila continues as Chairman and CEO until June 1, 2006, and it is proposed he continue as Non-Executive Chairman from that date
Current president Pekka Ala-Pietilä resigns from Nokia on February 1, 2006
Nokia, which recently produced mixed second quarter results, has announced that long-serving ceo Jorma Ollila will step upstairs to a non-executive chairmanship in June 2006. Pekka Ala-Pietilä will be replaced as president in October 2005 by Ollo-Pekka Kallasvuo, who will also assume the role of coo on that date. Kallasvuo will add Ollila’s ceo responsibilities to his portfolio in June 2006.
Kallasvuo is a previous chief financial officer at Nokia, and has been heading up the mobile phones division recently. Ollila, 54, has been ceo for 13 years, and has recently been expected to announce a succession. Many in Finland have tipped a political career for the man who has lead its most important company for so long. Al-Pietila has left to pursue “personal interests” according to a statement fro Nokia.
Paul Collins, Vice Chairman of the Nokia Board, said, “The Nokia Board has had in place a succession process in anticipation of Jorma Ollila’s retirement with the objective of maintaining vitality, adapting to a rapidly evolving industry, and ensuring continuity. The Board is convinced that Olli-Pekka Kallasvuo, with his strong industry credentials and over 20 years of experience at Nokia, will provide the required leadership for the Company in the future.”
“The Board also expresses its sincere thanks to Pekka Ala-Pietilä for his years of commitment, contribution, and leadership, as he has decided to leave Nokia and take on new challenges.”
Olli-Pekka Kallasvuo said, “It is a privilege to be offered this position. Nokia is a dynamic company in a fast-changing and fluid environment. I look forward to working together with our team to help Nokia shape the future of mobile communications at a pivotal time for the industry. Together we will continue to create great products and solutions that will delight our customers.”
Kallasvuo is known as a fluent communicator, and had been given the crucial mobile phone division to run as it faced price pressures and increased competition from newer market entrants and operators intent on wresting brand control.
Nokia will hope this phased succession will create an ordered environment, although there are often reservations from the markets when a ceo is seen to stay on during a handover period.