Microsoft adds 25,000 employees with Nokia deal, head count rises to 126,000

Microsoft has now finalized the deal to purchase most of Nokia's Devices and Services division and a Microsoft spokesperson confirmed to Neowin that the number of former Nokia employees that are now officially on Microsoft's payroll is "approximately 25,000."

The same spokesperson also told us that as of March 31st, Microsoft had 101,914 employees; that means today's Nokia deal increases Microsoft's worker headcount by close to 25 percent. 

When the deal was first revealed in September, Microsoft stated that it would add about 32,000 employees from Nokia's ranks. The lower headcount we got today is likely due to the situation surrounding Nokia's India smartphone plant, which has 6,600 workers, not being part of the deal. Nokia has agreed to operate the plant for at least another year under a contract for Microsoft but those workers won't officially be Microsoft employees.

While the deal itself is now finalized, the process of integrating Nokia's workers and operations into Microsoft has only just begun. In a statement today, Microsoft said, "The completion of the acquisition marks an important step in bringing these two organizations together as one team, a process that is expected to take 18 to 24 months to complete."

Image via Microsoft

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28 Comments

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I'm still not sure about all those "Nokia Stores" and "Nokia Cares" around the globe. MS has full control over them?

If so, that'd be such a great news...

Good luck, MS. I hope they manage to smash that arrogant fruit back to the niche status they belong to. And yes I'm well aware that those large corporations are all equally evil so it's really down to sympathy.

Your reply is really uncalled for. Are you looking to start an unnecessary argument? You sound just as bad as the competition you bash.

dancress said,
Good luck, MS. I hope they manage to smash that arrogant fruit back to the niche status they belong to. And yes I'm well aware that those large corporations are all equally evil so it's really down to sympathy.

I have no sympathy for MS, they were horrible bullies for years and they deserve all they get. They totally missed the modern day smartphone, remember Ballmer laughing at the iPhone? Personally I think that buying NOKIA was a huge mistake.

derekaw said,

remember Ballmer laughing at the iPhone?

I remember him laughing at the price of the first iPhone. I also remember that Apple had to reduce the price pretty soon after the iPhone was released - do you remember that?

derekaw said,

I have no sympathy for MS, they were horrible bullies for years and they deserve all they get. They totally missed the modern day smartphone, remember Ballmer laughing at the iPhone? Personally I think that buying NOKIA was a huge mistake.

Seems odd, companies like IBM are getting out of low margin hardware, and Microsoft is trying to build it up. Obviously they are trying to shore up their "Windows Everywhere" effort, but I can't see it working. Their surface has been a failure and caused huge write-offs, tablets are becoming "yesterdays news" as people realise their limitations, another smartphone, with its own unique operating system, is just another PalmOS waiting to happen.

derekaw said,

I have no sympathy for MS, they were horrible bullies for years and they deserve all they get. They totally missed the modern day smartphone, remember Ballmer laughing at the iPhone? Personally I think that buying NOKIA was a huge mistake.

The first iPhone was indeed laughable. It was just Jobs' RDF, the Apple crazy media and the iSheep cult that made it seem like the second coming of Christ.

MFH said,

I remember him laughing at the price of the first iPhone. I also remember that Apple had to reduce the price pretty soon after the iPhone was released - do you remember that?

I remember the iPhone 'changed everything' .I remember Ballmer laughing then I remember him doing nothing then suddenly cancelling Windows Mobile. Now MS has Windows Phone with about 3% Marketshare and pretty well no one cares about it.

derekaw said,

I remember the iPhone 'changed everything'

It did? I remember all stuff claimed to be invented for the iPhone being available on the market beforehand…

Nokia is THAT big? I understand physical production is more labour intensive than software design but I wasn't expecting those kind of numbers. This is going to make MS a lot less attractive to investors. The argument that in the long run this is a necessity to stay competitive is lost on those that look at historical figures. What they'll see is a similar revenu only generated by a 25% larger company.

Ronnet said,
Nokia is THAT big? I understand physical production is more labour intensive than software design but I wasn't expecting those kind of numbers. This is going to make MS a lot less attractive to investors. The argument that in the long run this is a necessity to stay competitive is lost on those that look at historical figures. What they'll see is a similar revenu only generated by a 25% larger company.

I'm sure MS didn't spend all that money getting Nokia, just to attempt to keep the same sales figures. Obviously the plan is to sell a lot more of their phones and make a massive impact in market share.

In saying that. I would expect over the coming years there will be more layoffs. There are no doubt a lot of Nokia roles which Microsoft already has people doing.

Ronnet said,
Nokia is THAT big? I understand physical production is more labour intensive than software design but I wasn't expecting those kind of numbers. This is going to make MS a lot less attractive to investors. The argument that in the long run this is a necessity to stay competitive is lost on those that look at historical figures. What they'll see is a similar revenu only generated by a 25% larger company.

I don't see this as being negative, MS has channel supply problems, and shortages that impact the Surface and so on. They're basically outsourcing their production to 3rd parties who also share their workload with others.

Doing it in-house from your own factories is better option, and you also get Nokias solid supply chain system. Now you can also have those factories working on Surface and even Xbox hardware to and so on.

Factories aside I think Nokia also has setups where it gets it's own raw materials that it needs. In my opinion though, anytime you can cut out the middle man/men in your process then it's a good thing.

Nashy said,

I'm sure MS didn't spend all that money getting Nokia, just to attempt to keep the same sales figures. Obviously the plan is to sell a lot more of their phones and make a massive impact in market share.

Of course but considering the revenue Nokia and their competitors (on average) are pulling in, I dont think their business has the same margin as Microsoft's. Unless you're first on market and as popular as Apple. So I doubt MS will ever have the same revenue per head as a 'service & devices' company then they had as the software giant. Naturally they also wouldnt be able to keep up their old practice in the long run. But that is irrelevant to angry investors.

George P said,

In my opinion though, anytime you can cut out the middle man/men in your process then it's a good thing.

As a supply chain consultant I don't fully agree with that statement. Under certain conditions integration is the better solution. However in the case of MS I think integration is indeed best. They want to be a services & devices company and then this is key. I'm just pointing out that this is going to look bad to investors and it's going to dominate the news when MS presents their fiscal results the next coming years.

Ronnet said,

and as popular as Apple.

Their goal is more than likely to be more popular. Are there actually any reports that investors are unhappy with this?

Nashy said,

Their goal is more than likely to be more popular. Are there actually any reports that investors are unhappy with this?

There are reports that some are (extremely) unhappy with the purchase. They don't think it's the right direction for the company. But those are the investors that are paying attention (whether they are right or wrong in their assessment). I'm now making a prediction for the future. That a much larger group of investors won't be happy about the performance figures that follow such a take over. The small group of detractors will put some fuel on that sentiment to support their case.

For the short term it'll business as usual for many if not all of those workers, the bulk of them are at the 7 ex-nokia factories that are now owned by MS, for them the check might look a bit different but that's about it. I also think the main design/software team is going to stay in Finland and not move to MS HQ, or maybe a few will but that could be in the long run, a year from now.

What I want to see is how much volume MS can pump out of these factories now that they own them, Nokia was strapped for cash as we know and I doubt they were running them at close to full capacity which would explain why many Lumia phones have these slow rollouts instead of a global release.

George P said,
For the short term it'll business as usual for many if not all of those workers, the bulk of them are at the 7 ex-nokia factories that are now owned by MS, for them the check might look a bit different but that's about it. I also think the main design/software team is going to stay in Finland and not move to MS HQ, or maybe a few will but that could be in the long run, a year from now.

What I want to see is how much volume MS can pump out of these factories now that they own them, Nokia was strapped for cash as we know and I doubt they were running them at close to full capacity which would explain why many Lumia phones have these slow rollouts instead of a global release.

Were they that bad for cash?

duddit2 said,

Were they that bad for cash?

They had $4 billion or so last I read but we're talking 8 factories plus all the other stuff they had to run. I think they limited their output and played it safe, it's the only thing I can point to as to why Lumias always have these slow rollouts. Look at the new 630 and 930 that are coming soon, we're talking about a rollout that's going to take 3-4 months for both to be in most markets from what I remember them saying, that's slow IMO.

I'm hopping with MS's deeper pockets they can push these to market quicker, what would take 4 months to rollout across the globe should now take a month IMO.

Edited by George P, Apr 25 2014, 4:16pm :

duddit2 said,

Were they that bad for cash?

The massive shortage of Lumia 920s for weeks after launch was put down to money problems.

George P said,
For the short term it'll business as usual for many if not all of those workers.

Give it 2 years and at least 50% of those workers will have been made redundant, as their job roles would already be carried out by existing Microsoft employees and systems.

Shadowzz said,
Microsoft is well known for global rollouts of their devices and services.
Microsoft didn't have any manufacturing plants of their own. They had to outsource all their hardware to Foxconn which is pretty much booked year round, mainly by Apple twice a year. Now with 8 factories at their disposal, under proper management, they can churn out hardware at least eight to ten times faster. If Microsoft is serious about getting into hardware, they can become one of the biggest hardware companies in coming years.

psionicinversion said,
Just hope they leave them alone and dont screw up there phones cus there the best in the industry

That's what people seem to always come up with as a negative but I don't see it, basically the Nokia phone division itself is now just a, as they say officially, a MS subsidiary called MS Mobile. The same people in charge of the phones before are still in charge of them, Elop and his managers and so on. The thing that does change in this is that now these same people will probably have a part to play in future Surface devices.

psionicinversion said,
Just hope they leave them alone and dont screw up there phones cus there the best in the industry

pretty much the only difference now and then is that they have way more money to throw at the phone development then before.. There are going to be some epic phones in the next few years