SAN FRANCISCO— Finnish mobile phone vendor Nokia Corp. said Tuesday (Dec. 4) it plans to sell its headquarters in Espoo, Finland, to a real estate investment firm for 170 million euro (about $223 million).
Nokia said it plans to lease the office building from the real estate investment firm, Finland-based Exilion Capital Ltd., on a long-term basis. Nokia said it expects to complete the sale by the end of 2012.
"We had a comprehensive sales process with both Finnish and foreign investors and we are very pleased with this outcome," said Timo Ihamuotila, Nokia's chief financial officer. "As we have said before, owning real estate is not part of Nokia's core business and when good opportunities arise we are willing to exit these types of non-core assets."
Last week, chip vendor Advanced Micro Devices Inc. announced its intention to sell its main campus in Austin, Texas, and lease the facility back from the buyer on a long-term basis.
Nokia's headquarters, known as Nokia House. The building was designed by architect Pekka Helin.
Nokia has operated in its current headquarters since 1997. The space is about 157,000 square feet.
In a separate statement, Exilion said the deal nearly doubles its property portfolio value. "We are proud of this new partnership with Nokia," Exilion said.
Nokia, which for years was the world's largest handset maker, has struggled in recent quarters as competitors like Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. and Apple Inc. reap higher profit margins from the red hot smartphone segment. In the third quarter, Nokia ranked No. 2 overall in handset market share and seventh in smartphones, according to market research firm Gartner Inc.