Nokia Bails on Its Own Enterprise E-Mail

Turning its back on its 2006 acquisition of Intellisync for $430 million to bolster its enterprise platform, Nokia now plans to move forward with collaborations between its smartphones and enterprise platforms from providers including Cisco, Microsoft and IBM. Nokia also puts its security appliances business up for sale.

Nokia said Sept. 29 it was dropping further development plans for its enterprise e-mail platform to focus on collaborations between Nokia's smartphones and enterprise platforms from providers including Cisco, Microsoft and IBM. Nokia also announced it is in the advanced stages of discussions for the potential sale of its security appliances business to a financial investor.

The new emphasis on outside collaboration leaves Nokia's 2006 $430 million acquisition of Intellisync to bolster its own enterprise applications at a dead end.

"We have very strong relationships with industry leading enterprise technology partners such as Cisco and Microsoft, as well as a broad range of operator and retail channel partners," Niklas Savander, Nokia's executive vice president for services and software, said in a statement. "Together with them, we will use our expertise in devices, as well as the combined channel footprint and customer base, to deliver a range of unbeatable end-to-end offerings for business."

Nokia said the decision to cease developing or marketing its own behind-the-firewall business mobility solutions would be an "extremely positive development" for its security appliance business.

"The investor is committed to continuing the development and growth of the business, to serving its current network of customers, and to retaining and motivating its employees," Savander said.

Further news about the transactions will be announced when a definitive agreement is reached.

Savander said the success of the Nokia E71 with Microsoft Exchange ActiveSync is an example of the attractiveness of Nokia's new approach. Terry Myerson, corporate vice president of the Exchange Group at Microsoft, agreed with Savander.

"As recently demonstrated by the launch of Microsoft Exchange ActiveSync on over 40 Nokia S60 phones, Microsoft and Nokia are committed to working together to deliver great experiences for our customers", said Myerson.

Brett Galloway, senior vice president of Cisco's Wireless and Security Technology, added, "We have been working closely with Nokia to deliver voice and data mobile business solutions that combine Nokia's best-in-class mobile devices with Cisco's complete range of unified communications and wireless networking offerings."