Nokia Finalizes Symbian Hand-off to Accenture

Nokia and Accenture announce finalization of a deal to outsource all Symbian software development and support services to Accenture.

Nokia and Accenture have finalized their agreement for Nokia to outsource Symbian software development and support activities to Accenture.

Under the agreement, which was initially announced on April 27, Accenture will provide Symbian-based software development and support services to Nokia through 2016. Approximately 2,800 Nokia employees located in China, Finland, India, the United Kingdom and the United States are expected to transfer to Accenture at the closing of the deal, which is expected to take place in the early part of October 2011.

"We look forward to partnering with Nokia as they continue to support Symbian and transition to the Windows Phone ecosystem," said Marty Cole, chief executive of the Accenture Communications and High Tech group, in a statement. "The highly skilled group of technologists and engineers transferring to Accenture will complement our current mobility skills and enhance the breadth, depth and scale of our capabilities, allowing us to meet the growing global demand for mobility services across many industries."

"Our collaboration with Accenture allows us to meet our ongoing commitment to support our Symbian smartphone customers and continue to leverage the talent that has the deepest experience on the platform," said Jo Harlow, executive vice president for Smart Devices at Nokia, in a statement. "As we move our primary smartphone platform to Windows Phone, we will look to explore potential opportunities to tap this talent pool as they develop and expand their knowledge and capabilities beyond Symbian."

The agreement calls for Accenture to support and further develop Nokia's Symbian platform and to become the preferred supplier to Nokia on their transition to Windows Phone, Nokia officials said. Accenture will seek opportunities to leverage transferring employee skills and capabilities to provide mobility software, business and operational services around the Windows Phone platform to Nokia and other ecosystem participants. Accenture also will seek to retrain and redeploy transferred employees, Accenture officials said.

Moreover, Accenture officials said the company will also work with Avanade, a technology service company that is majority-owned by Accenture and focuses on Microsoft technologies, to provide further services to Nokia.