Nokia reports increase in handset sales

Nokia, the world's largest mobile phone maker, has reported an increased volume in handset sales, but lower revenue for the...

Nokia, the world's largest mobile phone maker, has reported an increased volume in handset sales, but lower revenue for the period in its third-quarter financial results.

Nokia's pro forma net sales for the third quarter came in at €6.87bn (£4.8bn), a 5% decline on net sales of €7.22bn for the same quarter last year.

Net profit, on a pro-forma basis, fell 2% to €861m (£598m), compared with €881m in the third quarter of last year.

The company expects revenue of Nokia mobile phones in the fourth quarter to be flat or slightly up year on year.

Stagnant sales of mobile phones in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, and declining sales in Asia Pacific were just about offset by strong net sales growth in the Americas, including the US.

The popularity of lower priced entry-level mobile phones, particularly in the Americas and emerging markets such as India and Russia, are also driving down profits, Nokia said.

Mobile phone revenue was €5.62bn (£3.9bn) in the third quarter, compared with €5.63bn in the same quarter the previous year.

Nokia's share of the overall mobile phone market remained steady at 39%, the same percentage reported in the second quarter of this year, but up from the 36% it held in third quarter of 2002.

Nokia shipped 45.5 million handsets in the third quarter, 23% more than a year earlier. It estimated industry shipments of mobile phones in the quarter grew 15% year on year to 118 million units.

Nokia forecasted overall industry volume for 2003 to be about 460 million units, with its own full-year unit volume growth expected to outpace the overall market.

Sales in Nokia Networks, the division that sells mobile phone networks to operators, were €1.22bn (£847m), a decline of 21% compared with sales of €1.55bn in the same quarter of last year.

Laura Rhode writes for IDG News Service

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