Finland’s state-owned investment fund on Tuesday announced the acquisition of a 3.3 percent stake in Nokia for more than $1 billion.
Solidium, which in part seeks to strengthen Finnish ownership of “nationally important companies,” said the shares were acquired from the market during the beginning of 2018 following the divestment of its stake in Swedish telecom Telia.
The telecom equipment giant now comprises 11 percent of the fund’s equity investments, officials said.
Nokia, like other equipment makers, has struggled amid competition from Chinese rivals and due to reluctance among Western operators to invest in equipment as they await next-generation technology.
In its latest financial report, however, the company suggested it is “remarkably well-positioned” to take advantage of full-scale rollouts of 5G networks next year and into 2020.
And although Nokia went through a well-publicized decline as it fell from its dominant position in the mobile phone market, Solidium officials noted it remains the country’s largest company.
“The appealing factors for us are the company’s strong market position combined with broad technological expertise, which provides opportunities for value creation,” Solidium CEO Antti Mäkinen said in a statement.
Mäkinen told Reuters that the investment fund will not seek a spot on Nokia’s board at its forthcoming shareholders meeting, but it could explore that possibility in the future.
Filed Under: Infrastructure