Summary:

Another old-guard Nokia (NYSE: NOK) exec is being put out to pasture on the eve of the handset maker’s big Nokia World conflab.

Markets EVP…

Anssi Vanjoki

Another old-guard Nokia (NYSE: NOK) exec is being put out to pasture on the eve of the handset maker’s big Nokia World conflab.

Markets EVP Anssi Vanjoki is resigning, with a six-month notice period, saying in Nokia’s announcement: “I felt the time has come to seek new opportunities in my life.”

Vanjoki has been with Nokia since 1991 – as phones sales VP, then Europe and Africa phones SVP, then EVP of phones, then EVP and GM of multimedia.

But Nokia’s is the briefest of statements, with no thanks for Vanjoki’s 19 years service. It’s not clear if Vanjoki’s exit was decided by new CEO Stephen Elop or would have come anyway as part of the CEO search Nokia’s board started in October last year, or whether Vanjoki was amongst the internal candidates to try for the CEO post.

“Now is the right time to bring in new executive leadership with slightly different skills and strengths in order to drive company success,” board chair Jorma Ollila told journalists on Friday, unveiling Elop.

Like Elop’s predecessor Olli-Pekka Kallasvuo, Vanjoki had been programmed as a speaker at Nokia World, Nokia’s annual stakeholder event, which runs in London over Tuesday and Wednesday. Unlike Kallasvuo, Vanjoki is still listed on the event website.

Until these changes, this year’s Nokia’s World would have been an opportunity to test Kallasvuo’s optimism that Symbian 3 and Nokia’s N8 handset are the foundations on which it will begin its. smartphone fightback…

But, with these executive moves, Nokia’s board has effectively already judged on that. Now Nokia World could be a blank slate.

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