Nokia's past is the future?


The founder of Nokia, Fredrik Idestam, was a remarkable man. As a young engineer, while visiting Germany in the 1860's, he had come across a new technique to produce paper, revolutionarily with wood as a raw material. He was excited and saw the possibilities and eventually -through a lot of hardships -  found Nokia company and started to use these new techniques. That was truly the beginning of Finland in terms of building a modern society with export tying it to world economy. Nokia grew to be a building block for Finnish industry.

Something of similar happened again in early 1990's.  This time Nokia went first through the gates of hell. Nokia had done really bad over the last couple of years. As a result Nokia was in a very bad shape and was  almost sold to Ericsson to whom it was offered. Eventually Ericsson refused, on the basis that German TV production was not something they could desire of buying along with the package.

The rest is of course history. Just in that moment, when Nokia was down on her knees, new ideas sparked Nokia that proved to build a path for new platform for communication. As in the case of Idestam, also now there was a lot of disbelief around the idea of building business around mobile communication. There was a common belief by that time that only high executives ever needed personal mobile communication. But what eventually resulted was communication revolution, led by Nokia.

What is always common in these cases is the belief that what is currently dominant is the way it will be. For us humans this is very human thinking indeed, but ultimately it leads us often enough to a wrong path.

Nokia is now at the threshold of a new beginning. It has money to invest and hopefully one or two ideas where it can go from here. I hope personally that Nokia's future is to be found somewhere where intelligent technologies meet the demand for using less material and energy for making service. It's long history contains signpost of being pioneer.

Hope that spirit is there again

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