All this comes from Tomi Ahonen and not really the only times he has mentioned this:

The only reason the handset unit ‘generated a profit’ in Q4 was because Elop sold the HQ building and then attributed all its revenues to the handset unit, rather than accross all Nokia divisions evenly. Now he’s sold the Nokia Oulu technology campus in Finland, is that so he can create another fictional profit for his handset unit for Q1?

February, 2013 [1]

And he’s now playing accounting tricks to try to convince everyone that Nokia is ‘profitable’ such as selling the Nokia HQ building for the Q4 2012 quarter, and assigning all its income to the handsets unit, to create the thinnest sliver of ‘profit’ for the handsets unit

June, 2013 [2]

When it reported a profit recently, it was with accounting gimmicks – selling the Nokia headquarters building but assigning all that income only to the handsets unit, rather that split across Nokia’s different businesses proportionately.

September, 2013 [3]


This is exactly why this blog exists. How anyone calling himself “best-selling Technology and Media Strategy Consultant ” does not understand even this much on how corporations work?


On the other hand, he could be doing this on purpose.

Nokia fourth quarter interim report [4] tells us that “Nokia sold its head office building in Espoo, Finland, to Finland-based Exilion and has leased it back from Exilion on a long-term lease. The selling price was EUR 170 million.” and the same Interim Report says that Operating profit of Devices&Services (non-IFRS) was positive EUR 52 million.

In case someone is not familiar with “non-IFRS”, Nokia hands out two sets of profits every quarter. One is including one-time costs like selling a headquarter or buying some small Swedish startup (puns intended), other one excludes all such profits or losses and this latter one is marked with “non-IFRS”. This is explained pretty clearly in every interim report and I have trouble figuring out why it is so hard for Tomi to understand it.

So that positive EUR 52 million cannot contain the sales of headquarters.

But wait, there is more!
Tomi also has been VERY clear on “attributed all its revenues to the handset unit, rather than accross all Nokia divisions” part. That would mean all of the EUR 170 million (sum stated in Interim Report) is attributed to D&S profit (before subtracting it to create non-IFRS results). Here’s what we have from the same interim report:

Note 2 relating to non-IFRS exclusions:
Q4 2012 — EUR 196 million (net) consisting of:

EUR 79 million net gain on sale of real estate in Devices & Services

…which means that roughly 46% was attributed to D&S and 54% to other units. So not true for that part either.

Filing Nokia Group level transactions to Devices & Services unit only would be accounting offense and lead to serious consequences. Does Tomi really believe Nokia could do something like that or is he just lying?
Either way I have to call once again for the “Incredible liar or incredibly incompetent“.