Conspiracy fans of the world rejoice! This is an interesting speculation that will no doubt play out over the next year or two: Did Microsoft put a mole into Nokia with the intent of weakening the company enough to pave the way for Microsoft's planned acquisition of it?
The argument revolves around Stephen Elop (a former employee of Microsoft) who: left to become the first non-Finn CEO of Nokia, pulled Nokia out of the Linux development community, announced a shift to Microsoft for the "new" OS for Nokia's line of (till then) uber
-successful smartphones, issued an extremely damaging "burning platform" memo about Nokia's products and product strategy that was 'mysteriously' leaked with predictable results, engineered the sale of Nokia to Microsoft - and will now be returning to Microsoft as head of its devices team following the sale.
This has raised the question: Did Stephen Elop ever really stop being a Microsoft employee - even when he was heading Nokia? Is it just possible that he was put in with the sole intent of crippling a successful company enough for Microsoft to devour it?
shows this career timeline for Mr. Elop:
Elop was a director of consulting for Lotus Development Corporation before becoming CIO for Boston Chicken in 1992, which filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in 1998. In the same year, he joined Macromedia's Web/IT department and worked at the company for seven years, where he held several senior positions, including CEO from January 2005 for three months before their acquisition by Adobe Systems was announced in April 2005.
He was then president of worldwide field operations at Adobe, tendering his resignation in June 2006 and leaving in December, after which he was the COO of Juniper Networks for exactly one year from January 2007-2008.
From January 2008 to September 2010, Elop worked for Microsoft as the head of the Business Division, responsible for the Microsoft Office and Microsoft Dynamics line of products, and as a member of the company's senior leadership team. It was during this time that Microsoft's Business Division released Office 2010.
In September 2010, it was announced that Elop would take Nokia's CEO position, replacing Olli-Pekka Kallasvuo, and becoming the first non-Finnish director in Nokia's history. On 11 March 2011 Nokia announced that it had paid Elop a $6 million signing bonus, “compensation for lost income from his prior employer," on top of his $1.4 million annual salary.
On 3 September 2013, Microsoft announced that it would acquire Nokia's Devices and Services division for €3.79 billion ($4.99 billion at the time of the transaction). Elop stepped down as CEO of Nokia and will return to Microsoft as Head of Microsoft's Devices team.
The discussions surrounding this along with the seemingly odd set of circumstances and decisions that led to Nokia faltering have been covered in two extremely interesting articles. Both are fairly long and worth reading in full.
If you're interested in following this story (and aren't part of the short attention span "TLDR" crowd) check out this article over at TechRights for a good pull-no-punches overview. Link here
Summary: Nokia officially assassinated by Microsoft, with a Canadian citizen who organised the coup now set to return to Microsoft’s headquarters
Stephen Elop never left Microsoft. We knew this all along. “Once the transition is finalized,” to quote Wikipedia, “Elop will become an Executive Vice President at Microsoft.” Elop was an appalling, dangerous, malicious mole all along....
Microsoft decided to just send a mole to take over Nokia’s business, abolish Linux there (Nokia had become one of the top Linux contributors), remove any chances of Android adoption there, then feed trolls to attack Android and sue Android directly.
According to the New York Times, Mr. Elop’s “family still lives in the Seattle area” (how telling).
There's plenty more where that came from in the TechRights article..
Referenced within the TechRights article is a link to this article
that gets into the real nitty-gritty of the allegation.
The Full Story of Nokia and Microsoft - How we got here, and why Microsoft will fail with Nokia handsets just like it did with Kin
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY by member 'caffeine-overclock' over at Reddit:
Elop killed Nokia twice: First by announcing the move to Windows Phone 9 months before they could deliver, and again by announcing that no more MeeGo phones would be produced the day after the first MeeGo phone was released to extremely positive reviews.
Microsoft's phone ambitions are similarly doomed because buying Skype caused most if not all of the global carriers to despise Microsoft, and by association Nokia. This will only get worse as time goes on, since Microsoft/Nokia just became Microsoft and any residual good will from Nokia is gone. Without carrier support, Microsoft can't succeed in those markets.
Definitely worth the read if you have time.
This is gonna be a fun
one. Grab a seat. Did Microsoft put a mole in Nokia?
Per mouser's request: relevant links in this thread:Stephen Elop's bio on WikipediaTechRights: Microsoft’s Patent Attack on Linux/Android Advances to Next Stage With New Nokia Acquisition, Patent Setup - by Dr. Roy SchestowitzThe Full Story of Nokia and Microsoft - How we got here, and why Microsoft will fail with Nokia handsets just like it did with Kin
Note: I can't promise I can stay up on this - but I'll try.