Nokia’s vice president of Media Relations has reached out to BGR and pointed out that “our non-Finnish speaking audience would appreciate balanced coverage.” Nokia would like our readers to be aware of the fact that “when comparing with Nokia’s global competitors and their CEOs in similar situations, Elop’s compensation is not very generous. Motorola Mobility CEO Sanjay Jha was promised $47 million in 2011 as Google bought Motorola’s phone business,” for example.
This is a fair point.
It is also fair to point out that in the third quarter in 2008, Motorola posted a loss of nearly $400 million. Its handset sales plunged by nearly 10% sequentially. The company that Sanjay Jha took over in the autumn of 2008 was a basket case — many expected it to be out of business by the end of 2009. Sanjay Jha managed to turn things around and trick Google into paying an astonishing $12.5 billion for the company just three years later.
In contrast, Stephen Elop became a CEO of a company that a posted $2.1 billion profit in 2010 as quarterly smartphone sales soared to 28 million by the holiday quarter that year. When Elop was done, Nokia was facing an acute cash crisis and selling 8 million smartphones per quarter.
So yes, Mr. Jha received $47 million for turning a basket case into a $12.5 billion sale. And Nokia’s VP of Media Relations would like you to know that this means that Mr. Elop deserves $25 million for turning Nokia’s handset unit into, well, something. I’m not sure what.
But anyway, this comparison has been brought to your attention at the request of Nokia.