Light Reading
After the recent turmoil, Nokia needs stability and Suri can provide that.

Rajeev Suri: The Right Choice for Nokia

Ray Le Maistre
4/29/2014
50%
50%

It will come as no surprise to many that Rajeev Suri has been named as the CEO of the "new" Nokia, now that the devices business has been sold to Microsoft: What's left of the Finnish firm largely comprises NSN, of which Suri has been the CEO since October 2009.

What might be up for debate is whether Suri is the right person for the job. There might be some who think that an external appointment would make sense to take Nokia, which does have two other units (HERE and Technologies, as well as NSN), into its next corporate phase. (See Nokia Ushers In New Era, Retires NSN Name.)

Suits Nokia
Rajeev Suri is the right person to lead the 'new' Nokia.
Rajeev Suri is the right person to lead the 'new' Nokia.

But this is not the time to rock the boat or to take risks. Nokia Networks (NSN), which is now to be called Networks within the new Nokia Corp. (NYSE: NOK), generates the vast majority of the company's revenues, about 87%, and has been steadily improving its margins and overall financial health following a major restructuring program that was first announced in November 2011. (See NSN Unveils Its Kill List, NSN to Restructure, and NSN Could Lose More Than 17,000 Staff.)

That restructuring could have been the death of NSN. Instead it has ended up being the savior of Nokia -- if the NSN revamp had failed, Nokia would no longer exist at all, let alone in its new, slimmed-down format.

The success of the restructuring is primarily down to Suri's focus, determination, and calm leadership -- he has had to rip apart a large company, sell non-core assets and preside over mass redundancies, a task that has been tough but which was necessary for long-term survival: NSN now has 48,500 staff compared with more than 74,000 in late 2011. (See NSN to Sell Optical Business and Redknee to Acquire NSN's BSS Biz.)

And right from the time he took over as CEO at NSN he preached a story of survival and focused on mobile broadband, professional services, and customer experience management (CEM) as the three areas where NSN could deliver what customers needed and wanted. (See NSN CEO: Don't Write Our Obituary.)

After more than four years at the helm of NSN, Suri knows the operation inside out and the staff, customers, and partners know him well too. The short- and medium-term financial health of Nokia will be determined by how well NSN/Networks performs, and Suri has got that business to where it is today. Bringing in someone above him, who would then want to bring in their own senior management team, would have been a big mistake, but one that could easily have been made. The Nokia board has made the right choice.

I have met Suri on numerous occasions and he comes across as a very thoughtful character with very clear ideas of what he wants to do and how he wants to do it. (See NSN CEO: We've Got Our Mojo Back, NSN's Rajeev Suri: Restructuring, Research & Resilience, and NSN's Rajeev Suri: Carrier Capex & Customer Experience.)

He's also very calm, even when provoked by excitable media types, and that's what Nokia needs right now -- a CEO that can be depended upon to deliver a clear vision and then stick to that vision without any wild surprises.

After years of turmoil, Suri is the right person to provide the kind of leadership Nokia needs just now.

— Ray Le Maistre, Circle me on Google+ Follow me on TwitterVisit my LinkedIn profile, Editor-in-Chief, Light Reading

(5)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Susan Fourtané
50%
50%
Susan Fourtané,
User Rank: Blogger
5/3/2014 | 8:00:58 AM
Re: just right
Carol, 

He was a good leader at NSN, there is no reason why he woudn't be one now. 

-Susan
Susan Fourtané
50%
50%
Susan Fourtané,
User Rank: Blogger
5/3/2014 | 7:36:46 AM
Re: just right
Kruz, 

"Changes are not new to Nokia as it is a company that changed its core business many times thoughout the past century and with Rajeev on board, the boat is ready to sail again."

Exactly. :)

At this point a new change is simply one more chapter in the big book of Nokia. Next year it will be its 150th anniversary. It's quite likely that there will be more to celebrate than just the anniversary.

At this point and after mourning for the handsets unit, Nokia is ready to put itself together and show some sisu. :D 

-Susan 
DOShea
50%
50%
DOShea,
User Rank: Blogger
4/29/2014 | 4:27:42 PM
Re: just right
Yes, we'll see. A lot of Nokia fans right now seem to be still pining for the devices unit. Can he get people to believe in a different identity under the familiar name?
Carol Wilson
50%
50%
Carol Wilson,
User Rank: Blogger
4/29/2014 | 4:13:09 PM
Re: just right
I suspect the industry will adopt a wait-and-see attitude until he actually achieves some of these objectives but if he succeeds, more power to him. 
Kruz
50%
50%
Kruz,
User Rank: Light Sabre
4/29/2014 | 8:48:52 AM
just right
He is what the industry needs at this stage, a CEO bold enough to come up with a turnaround plan and effectively execute it. Thumbs up for the work he did at NSN.

Changes are not new to Nokia as it is a company that changed its core business many times thoughout the past century and with Rajeev on board, the boat is ready to sail again.
Educational Resources
sponsor supplied content
Educational Resources Archive
More Blogs from Shades of Ray
For decades, OSS has been a back-office issue; now it's at the heart of telco transformation strategies.
A threshold has been reached as the telcos commit to SDN and NFV – and that will be good news for some vendors and not such good news for others.
Telefónica highlights the potential for data to play a transactional role in digital lives.
Open source is already rampant in comms networking developments, and now it's reaching into the emerging drones sector too, with Qualcomm and Intel on board.
The SDN community is gathered in Germany for a few days of loving and loathing – so what's hot?
Flash Poll
From The Founder
It's clear to me that the communications industry is divided into two types of people, and only one is living in the real world.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei's Agile Switch Benefiting Saudi Arabia's Yamamah Hospital

11|24|14   |   2:40   |   (0) comments


Saudi Arabia's Yamamah Hospital speaks about how Huawei's Agile Switch has improved the medical service's network infrastructure.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
FanPlay & Huawei Build a Wireless Agile Smart Stadium

11|24|14   |   2:13   |   (0) comments


FanPlay is a cloud-based white label service, which is effectively a football fan engagement platform underpinned by mobile payment technology.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Building an Agile Stadium

11|24|14   |   3:54   |   (0) comments


Stadiums may be thousands of tons of concrete and steel, but they now need to be agile. Being at the stadium may not be as alluring as it once was. Sports franchises and stadium operators discuss how to get fans back.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei Helps ChinaCache Tackle Challenges in the Internet Industry

11|24|14   |   3:09   |   (0) comments


ChinaCache is China's largest content distribution network supplier. Huawei's CE12800 has provided ChinaCache with very strong support in its establishment of an infrastructure network.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Cefinity on Managed Security Services & Next-Generation Firewall

11|24|14   |   7:05   |   (0) comments


Cefinity is a cloud management service provider in Southeast Asia. Ivan Zhang, CEO of the company, discusses the implementation of security service management in the cloud era.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei's Agile Gateway in the Eyes of Cefinity

11|24|14   |   2:11   |   (0) comments


Cefinity is a managed service provider for enterprise networks. The company currently uses Huawei's AR series routers for the most complete range of functions. CEO Ivan Zhang speaks about the advantages of the AR series routers.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
CTO of Bus-Online Talks About Huawei's Agile Gateway

11|24|14   |   2:53   |   (0) comments


Bus-Online covers around 100 million users everyday. In addition to providing mobile TV, and advertising services to the public, Bus-Online has also entered the field of mobile Internet.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Amsterdam ArenA as an Agile Campus

11|24|14   |   3:31   |   (0) comments


The Amsterdam ArenA, home of the Ajax soccer team, can be a crowded space. ArenA has partnered with Huawei to work on bringing ample bandwidth to 53,000 people at the same time.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Building a Gigabit Wireless Network

11|24|14   |   3:15   |   (0) comments


3W is dedicated to customer-centric services such as catering, incubator and PR. To do this requires a solid IT structure. In this video, 3W discusses how Huawei has helped to achieve its goals.
LRTV Interviews
The New Wave of IP + Optical Integration

11|21|14   |   04:29   |   (8) comments


At the Alcatel-Lucent Technology Symposium, Heavy Reading senior analyst Sterling Perrin talks about how SDN has reshaped the discussion around packet and optical integration.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei Highlights at BBWF 2014

11|20|14   |   3:40   |   (1) comment


Broadband World Forum is one of the world's largest telecoms, media and technology events with over 7,800 senior executives from across the globe converging on Amsterdam every year to identify the Next Big Thing. BBWF is an exciting place to meet the entire industry under one roof and identify the latest in network innovation, service optimization and customer ...
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
How Will BCMS Stimulate Margin for Broadband Operators?

11|19|14   |   6:52   |   (0) comments


In BBWF 2014, Liu Shuqing emphasizes the value of FMC 2.0 based full service experience by throwing light on the BCMS solution. The underlying principle of this innovative technique is to create network robustness and driving network from connection oriented to ACE – BAND oriented infrastructure, in which applications, cloud, and user experiences will be an asset ...
Upcoming Live Events
December 2, 2014, New York City
December 3, 2014, New York City
December 8-10, 2014, Reykjavik, Iceland
February 12, 2015, Atlanta, GA
April 14, 2015, New York City, NY
May 6, 2015, McCormick Convention Center, Chicago, IL
May 13-14, 2015, The Westin Peachtree, Atlanta, GA
June 9-10, 2015, Chicago, IL
Infographics
Irish Telecom outlines the rise of VoIP technology, including its adoption within businesses and their perception of its quality.
Hot Topics
Bell Labs Chief Slams 'Toy' Networks
Robert Clark, 11/19/2014
$38.3M: Ain't That a Kik in the SMS
Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, 11/20/2014
Do You Have a 2020 Vision?
Dennis Mendyk, Vice President of Research, Heavy Reading, 11/21/2014
The New Wave of IP + Optical Integration
Ray Le Maistre, Editor-in-chief, 11/21/2014
Google, AT&T, BT Unite on Network Data Models
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 11/20/2014
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed