Nokia today released its first quarter results for 2013, reporting a loss of €150m despite encouraging sales of its Lumia smartphone range.
The biggest issue for the Finnish smartphone company was the fall in sales of its standard mobile handsets, which dropped 30% from the previous quarter. This equated to shipments of just over 55 million, compared with almost 80 million in the fourth quarter of 2012.
Nokia Siemens Networks – its telecoms infrastructure business – also suffered a blow, with sales falling 30% from Q4, leaving an operating profit of just €3m.
Despite net sales coming in at €5.8bn – down 20% year on year and 27% from the previous quarter – Nokia could take some solace in the positive performance of its flagship Lumia smartphone line.
The Nokia Lumia line, which runs on Microsoft’s Windows Phone mobile operating system (OS), saw sales increase by 27% quarter on quarter week, shipping 5.6 million handsets in Q1, compared with 4.4 million in the previous three-month period.
This follows the launch of a number of new handsets to the Lumia range at February’s Mobile World Congress trade show in Barcelona, which offered more mid-tier and entry-level handsets to complement the higher-range smartphones.
Nokia’s CEO, Stephen Elop, remained upbeat in his statement regarding the company's Q1 results, while admitting there were challenges for the firm.
“At the highest level, we are pleased that Nokia Group achieved underlying operating profitability for the third quarter in a row,” he said. “While operating in a highly competitive environment, Nokia is executing our strategy with urgency and managing our costs very well.”
“People are responding positively to the Lumia portfolio and our volumes are increasing quarter over quarter. But on the other hand, our mobile phones business faces a difficult competitive environment and we are taking tactical actions and bringing new innovation to market to address our challenges.”
“All of these efforts are aimed at improving our financial performance and delivering more value to our shareholders.”