Design Principles

By Reuters  |  Print this article Print

Stephen Elop, a Canadian Microsoft executive, is joining Nokia as CEO.

Elop should bring to Nokia an understanding of the design principles that have driven Apple's success, as well as of the telecoms network industry in which Nokia's troubled Nokia Siemens Networks plays.

Before joining Microsoft, he spent several years in Silicon Valley, rising to become chief executive during seven years at Macromedia, a San Francisco software maker whose graphics and Web development tools were favored by Apple developers.

Macromedia made the Flash video and Dreamweaver software, which were retained by Adobe as key products when it bought Macromedia for $3.4 billion in 2005.

At Microsoft, Elop helped steer the company toward online versions of programs such as Word, Outlook and Excel that users could access from anywhere and even use on mobile devices, a major step for a company founded on installed software.

He was also credited with successfully managing the launch of Microsoft's Office 2010 suite earlier this year.

Microsoft and Nokia are long-time collaborators, and in August last year formed an alliance to bring Office applications such as Outlook e-mail to Nokia devices.

Microsoft's Business Division has traditionally been one of its two biggest and most profitable units, along with the Windows division. Last fiscal year it made $18.6 billion in sales, almost 30 percent of the company's total.

Elop will now find himself in charge of a company with sales of 41 billion euros and 124,000 employees worldwide.

(Additional reporting by Olaf Swahnberg in Stockholm, Bill Rigby in Seattle and Terhi Kinnunen in Helsinki; Editing by Dan Lalor, Hans Peters and Will Waterman)

($1 = 0.7882 euro)