So the Elop nonsense and destructive managment methods lasted only 15 months under Satya Nadella's watchful eye at Microsoft. He is effectively fired from Microsoft. The company realigns handsets into one division under Windows headed by Exec VP Terry Myerson. And Elop plus two other senior execs are kicked out with the press release out today.
Good riddance. Stephen Elop was the worst CEO in corporate history. He clearly was at fault on the top, when he went to Microsott, that same ex-Nokia handset unit with Lumia running on Windows Phone never did any better. Today we've seen new Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella examine Elop's performance of the flagship future division - you remember Nadella's introductory remarks to his employees were all about mobile and the cloud - now Elop is gone. And look at the text of the press release. Not one word about 'mobile' or 'handsets' or 'Lumia' in the actual announcements (only one mention on the bottom from the description of Microsoft the company being a 'mobiile-first' company). What a huge shift away from the failing Lumia unit to 'Windows and Devices' ie Surface will do fine, Xbox is doing fine. Lumia is dead.
Now someone will be running the Lumia unit under Exec VP Myerson for a while, and then when they see it is irretrievably dead, they will quietly shut down that business. This is a VERY clear sign of the writing on the wall. And sadly for any ex-Nokia employees, expect more layoffs to come in the aftermath of this announcement and the 'consolidation' within that new business unit. I think the ex-Nokia handset unit has no more than 24 months ahead of this point, and may be shut down far faster than that. Clearly Nadella knows how to read mathematics and the math about Elop's business was brutal. Elop is gone! A day of somber celebrtaions in Finland and all who were fired by that clown will think - at least he also got fired.
I will include a few links. If you just want to see one last time the performance of Stephen Elop and his 3 years as Nokia CEO, when we had clear metrics on the level of the destruction (Microsoft has not broken out the handset business performance this deeply except that the losses continued the past 15 months), you may want to read this one comprehensive summary of Elop tenure as Nokia CEO (with pictures).
I was not always against Elop. Before he joined Nokia, I was on this blog very criticial of his predecessor as CEO, Olli-Pekka Kallasvuo. I then welcomed Elop on this blog very eagerly in 2010 when he was announced.
I was fully supportive of his first 5 months as CEO as Nokia's performance improved and Nokia reported record profits in its smartphone division by Q4 of 2010, when Nokia towered over its rivals (Nokia had grown more in the year of 2010 than Apple or Blackberry or Samsung, yes that is true! Nokia was 'winning' very clearly the global war of smartphones in literally every continent except North America where only a tiny fraction of the world's market was even back then). I explained where Nokia's problems were (in marketing, not strategy) and was on this blog a week before Elop's mad Windows gamble was announced, explaining why Nokia's then-current strategy on Symbian, MeeGo, Ovi and Qt was the right way for Nokia and its vast developer community, the carrier community and Nokia's handset-making partners both existing on Symbian and announced on MeeGo. If you want to read kind of 'what could have been' here I am warning BEFORE the Windows strategy is announced, that it would be the dumbest move Nokia could make (and that even Android would be better).
Then there was the big Windows Announcement. I wrote in shock yet if you read the second half part of the blog, all of my forecasts turned out true. This is only minutes after the announcement and yes I said it will end in Nokia smartphone business being sold, most likely to Microsoft itself.
It could have worked out. I then waited to see how the new Lumia handsets would be (as well as the promised better Windows Phone 7 OS platform). And once we saw what it looked like and how badly Elop was messing up everything in the most important launch in Nokia's history, while others were promising that Lumia would win, before the first actual numbers were out, I gave my prognosis of why Lumia will fail. All of this turned out true.
Then we had a couple of years of a comedy of errors by Elop. I reported reguarly on his nonsense. But then I wrote the definitive blog about Elop mismanagement, some of you will remember Sun Tzu applied to Elop management. 30,000 words of only his biggest strategy blunders in 2 years. This is the definitive treatise of what all he destroyed at Nokia. Its perhaps the masterpiece blog article on this blog.
And lastly, was this a 'Nokia' problem or an 'Elop' problem. Would things get better once Microsoft took ownership of the troubled handset division. I wrote the clear preview of what to expect once Elop was back at Microsoft running this unit. And i said h'd be fired.
Its fair to say I saw it call coming and those of you who have been here with me, have read those same words as I wrote them, whether you believed me at the time or not. At least I hope I was able to prepare you for the shocking news as it eventually emerged. It has been a sad sad episode in tech history, how one incompetent CEO destroyed his company (to collect a personal bonus for doing so). As I said, my thoughts are with all those professional competent successful Nokia employees who were NEEDLESSLY fired because of this moron. Good roddance. The word Elop has now a meaning 'ultimate incompetence in management'