The Mobile Lowdown 04-13-11: Nokia Cuts; MNG Lists; Ozura World / Tatto


Our look at some of the stories today in mobile: Nokia (NYSE: NOK) reportedly making big cuts in its R&D staffing; mobile marketing agency Mobile Network Group goes public in France; and Asian mobile media company Ozura World buys mobile advertising company Tatto Media for $60 million.

Nokia: The switchover to Windows Phone 7 from Symbian will cost Nokia more than just the money it will pay in license fees to Microsoft (NSDQ: MSFT). It could cost up to 6,000 jobs, too.

A report from Bloomberg says that the Finnish company will announce by the end of this month big cuts to its research and development operation, resulting in workforce reductions of up to 6,000 people, or 38 percent of its worldwide R&D operation.

The cuts will come gradually: Nokia is still putting out updates to Symbian and it has said it will take until 2012 to make the transition to Microsoft’s WP7.

Nokia had a devices R&D budget of three billion euros ($4.3 billion) in 2010, more than double that of Apple’s $1.7 billion budget for the whole company. The devices budget would cover the range of activity from basic and feature phones all the way through to smartphones and tablets.

Mobile Network Group: It’s not only VCs and angel investors that can give a startup a leg up in raising funds. A new mobile marketing agency has launched and listed itself on the EuroNext exchange. The Mobile Network Group (ticker MNG) says it is the first integrated mobile marketing group to list publicly in France. The company is led by Paul Amsellem, president, who had founded the SMS marketing company PhoneValley, among other ventures; and Cedric Moreteau, CEO, who is head of Nemo Agency. Pascal Chevalier, an investor and board member, is president of Netbooster.

MNG calls itself a “one-stop resource” for mobile marketing campaigns — which speaks to an often-heard lament about how fragmented a lot of the process is in the wider mobile marketing industry. Services include audits, consulting, creation, development, tracking, and optimization of mobile marketing and advertising campaigns.

Ozura World/Tatto Media: Did we write fragmentation in mobile marketing? Here’s another example of how it is gradually consolidating:

Ozura World, a Hong Kong-based developer of mobile games and other mobile entertainment services, has acquired the mobile performance advertising network Tatto Media for $60 million.

There is not a lot of detail in the release about what Ozura intends to do with the acquisition, but it’s likely to be two-fold: to both use the network on its own content to get users of one game to try out other content from the company; and to begin to diversify its operations into marketing and advertising services.

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