Nokia turns sod on new Oulu R&D facility

By Arctic Business Journal - November 21, 2022
Nokia chair Sari Baldauf speaks during Friday’s cornerstone-laying ceremony (๐Ÿ“ธ: Nokia)

NOKIA HAS LAID the cornerstone of a product-development campus in Oulu, Finland, that it expects will solidify its position as one of the leaders of the current and coming standards for the transmission of information between wireless devices.

During a ceremony on Friday, the company began construction of a research-and-development facility it expects to help keep it at the forefront of 5G technologies, particularly those related to what the company calls “purpose-driven” and “collaborative” office spaces.

The 55,000 square metre site is due to be completed in 2025 and will replace the company’s existing facility in Oulu.

Nokia, once synonymous with mobile telephones, missed the transition to smartphones. After drastically downsizing, it successfully shifted to networking equipment, a market that is expected to be worth โ‚ฌ1 trillion by 2030.

Here, its products have been vital in establishing 5G mobile networks and are involved with developing 6G. Nokia is considered to be the only stable, non-Chinese supplier of 5G equipment, and it currently accounts for 20% of the market for these antennae and other hardware that โ€” though rarely noticed by users โ€” form the backbone of mobile networks.

At its height, Nokia employed some 24,000 people in Finland as part of a global workforce of more than 125,000. Today, its Finnish workforce has been reduced to some 7,000, but it has hired 2,000 people there in recent years.

The vast majority of these new positions are in R&D and are placed in its Espoo, Oulu and Tampere offices.

This article has been fact-checked by Arctic Business Journal and Polar Research and Policy Initiative, with the support of the EMIF managed by the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation.

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