Nokia and Siemens today officially confirmed that, at least for the moment, they had stopped looking at the possibility of selling off all or part of Nokia Siemens Networks (NSN) to private equity investors. Over recent months, many rumors had surfaced about the companies' attempts to find a private buyer for the cellular equipment vendor. Nokia Siemens Networks is a joint venture in which the two telecommunications players hold equal ownership.
In the past year, NSN has recorded losses of roughly $1 billion. This has put pressure on at least Nokia, which continues to struggle with its core cell phone business. Selling off at least part of NSN would help Nokia with cash flow and also allow the company to refocus back on its phones.
There has been dialog with at least two groups interested in NSN. Most recently, discussions with equity firms Gores Group LLC and Platinum Equity LLC apparently stalled. Previously, conversations with a coalition involving Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. and TPG Capital also are said to have died out.
In a brief statement, Olli-Pekka Kallasvuo, chairman of NSN, acknowledged that Nokia and Siemens had "completed" the process of reviewing private equity interests in NSN. He went on to state that the current situation of shareholder control of NSN would leave the company in the "best position to further enhance" its value.