Nokia’s quarterly losses amounted to €969 million, on revenues that declined 19% to €7.2 billion. More tellingly, its unit shipments were down 22%. But shares rose on the news, because the results were not as bad as expected. The company, once the dominant mobile phone supplier until iPhones and Androids came along, is pinning its hopes on its new Windows Phone 8 Lumia models, announced last month and soon to be released.
Meanwhile Reuters has quoted the leading French trades union group CFDT as saying Alcatel-Lucent will shed 5500 jobs globally. The job cuts, nearly 10% of the global workforce, were expected after the company announced cutbacks in July, but they have hit particularly hard in Alcatel-Lucent’s home country of France, where more than 1400 jobs, or 15% of the workforce, will be fired.
Union representatives pledged to fight the job cuts in France, and called on the socialist government to intervene. "We are in shock," said the CFDT’s Isabelle Guillemot. ”The move is a human and industrial catastrophe."
And earlier this week Spain's cash-strapped telco Telefónica SA finalised a deal to sell its Atento call centre business to private equity merchant Bain Capital Partners for €1.039 billion euros. It is tens of billions of dollars in debt.
As with the continent’s economy as a whole, all is not well with the state of the industry in Europe. Many of the biggest names are struggling, and for most of them there is no end in sight. At the same time Apple is booming, and so are many Asian players. Europe still has remarkable technological expertise, but its financial problems are affecting every aspect of its communications industry.