Nokia finished up its press conference at Mobile World Congress a few minutes ago, and toward the end of the conference somebody in the audience yelled to CEO Stephen Elop: “Are you a Trojan Horse?”
The questioner was referring to the fact that Elop left Microsoft in October to take the CEO job. After assessing the situation, Elop announced on Friday that Nokia is essentially abandoning its decade old Symbian smartphone platform and adopting Microsoft’s new Windows Phone 7 platform instead.
Elop of course denied that he was a plant. His response, as reported on Engadget’s live blog:
The obvious answer is no. We made sure that the entire management team was involved in the process, and of course the board of directors of Nokia are the only ones that can make this significant of a decision about Nokia. They made that final decision on Thursday night.
Elop also answered a question about his Microsoft shares, saying that he sold some as soon as he was allowed to but stopped selling prior to the announcement of the Nokia-Microsoft deal, as required by law. He also denied being seventh-largest individual Microsoft shareholder as some statistics show — he was at the company for less than two years, and holds about 130,000 shares worth about $3.18 million, according to Daily Finance. By way of comparison, top shareholder Bill Gates has 583 million shares worth $16.06 billion.
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