Alarm Bells Ringing: Nokia in 2010

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This case study was compiled from published sources, and is intended to be used as a basis for class discussion. It is not intended to illustrate either effective or ineffective handling of a management situation. Nor is it a primary information source.

Case Details:


Case Code : BSTR386 For delivery in electronic format: Rs. 600;
For delivery through courier (within India): Rs. 600 + Rs. 25 for Shipping & Handling Charges


Case Length : 20 Pages
Period : 2009-2010
Pub Date : 2011
Teaching Note : Not Available
Organization : Nokia Corporation
Industry : Mobile Phone
Countries : Global


This case study is about the challenges faced by Stephen Elop (Elop), the newly appointed president and CEO of the world’s leading mobile phone maker Nokia Corporation (Nokia). The year 2010 has been a tough one for Nokia as its profit margins have shrunk and the company faced a threat to its market leader position. For the second quarter ended June 30, 2010, Nokia reported a sharp drop in profits. Analysts felt that the company’s problems started in 2007 when Nokia began to lose customers in the high-end mobile phone market as it struggled to create a compelling smartphone portfolio amid competition from a host of rivals. Moreover, the Finnish phone maker failed to establish its presence in the world’s largest smartphone market – the US.

Nokia’s huge market in the low-end part of the market was, in part, blamed for its negative image in more developed markets such as the US and among people who wanted high-end phones. In the smartphone OS market too, competitors were catching up quickly on Nokia’s Symbian platform.


Examine the reasons for the problems faced by Nokia in 2010.

Analyze how Nokia can make its products competitive, foster innovation and regain its market share.

Examine the challenges faced by Elop in achieving his objective.

Explore strategies that Elop could adopt in these difficult times .


  Page No.
Market leader in trouble 1
About Nokia 2
Nokia's problems 3
Elop joins Nokia 7
Challenges galore 9
Road ahead 10
Exhibits 11


Market leadership, Competition, Mobile phone market, Smartphone market, Innovation,Global strategy, Leadership, Organizational culture, Change management, Strategic options, Implementation of strategy, Turnaround strategy, Business-level strategy, Competitive strategy, Nokia

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