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Nokia Corporation Interim Report for Q1 2024

Nokia Corporation
Interim report
18 April 2024 at 08:00 EEST

Nokia Corporation Interim Report for Q1 2024

Strong cash flow and improving orders despite market weakness

  • As expected, a slow start to 2024 with net sales declining 19% y-o-y in constant currency (-20% reported) in Q1.
  • Environment still challenging but order trends continue to improve year-on-year, particularly in Network Infrastructure.
  • Comparable gross margin in Q1 increased by 1 090bps y-o-y to 48.6% (reported increased 1 040bps to 47.9%). Strong contribution from Nokia Technologies which benefited from significant catch-up net sales, in addition to significant improvements in Mobile Networks due in part to regional and product mix.
  • Q1 comparable operating margin increased 460bps y-o-y to 12.8% (reported up 130bps to 8.6%), as licensing catch-up net sales more than made up for low net sales coverage of operating expenses impacting other business groups.
  • Q1 comparable diluted EPS of EUR 0.09; reported diluted EPS of EUR 0.08.
  • Q1 free cash flow almost EUR 1bn, net cash balance EUR 5.1bn.
  • Nokia's full year 2024 outlook is unchanged. Nokia currently expects comparable operating profit of between EUR 2.3 billion to 2.9 billion and free cash flow conversion from comparable operating profit of between 30% and 60%. 


This is a summary of the Nokia Corporation Interim Report for Q1 2024 published today. Nokia only publishes a summary of its financial reports in stock exchange releases. The summary focuses on Nokia Group's financial information as well as on Nokia's outlook. The detailed, segment-level discussion will be available in the complete financial report hosted at A video interview summarizing the key points of our Q1 results will also be published on the website. Investors should not solely rely on summaries of Nokia's financial reports and should also review the complete reports with tables.


As expected, the ongoing market weakness drove a 19% year-on-year constant currency decline in net sales in the first quarter. However, we have seen continued improvement in order intake, meaning we remain confident in a stronger second half and achieving our full year outlook. Driven by the patent licensing deals signed in Nokia Technologies, we achieved a comparable operating margin of 12.8% in Q1, compared to 8.2% the year before. We also generated almost EUR 1 billion in free cash flow in the quarter, which is a very strong performance.

I’m pleased that the improving order intake we started to see in Network Infrastructure at the end of last year continued in Q1 with year-on-year growth in order intake and drove a further increase in our backlog. The outlook for Fixed Networks for 2024 has improved which is an important signal as this market often recovers first. However, we believe the recovery in Optical Networks may take somewhat longer. While we are conscious of the broader economic environment, considering the on-going order intake strength, we expect Network Infrastructure will return to net sales growth for full year 2024 with a stronger second half performance.

Mobile Networks was impacted by particularly low levels of spending in North America and India, which led to a Q1 net sales decline of 37% in constant currency. A slower pace of spending in India was anticipated following the rapid 5G deployment seen in H1 2023, and our expectations for India for the full year remain unchanged. Globally, we expect Q1 to mark the low point in demand with activity then progressively picking up through the remainder of 2024 consistent with more normal seasonality. We saw significant strength in gross margin at 42% in the quarter, which is a solid improvement from the 34% in the year-ago quarter. Approximately half of this improvement was related to improving regional and product mix, while the remainder was due to exceptionally low indirect cost of sales.

Cloud and Network Services saw a soft start to the year which was related to the challenging spending environment. However, we are seeing improving order intake and pipeline momentum. Importantly, we are also making good progress with our Network as Code platform. This platform enables operators to monetize their 5G investments, creating new revenue streams by offering developers advanced API access to the network. We now have a total of 11 operators signed up to the platform with many more in active discussions.

Nokia Technologies had a very strong start to the year as we concluded a number of outstanding licensing deals in the quarter. This meant that our annual licensing net sales run-rate improved from the EUR 0.9 to 1.0 billion we had in Q4 to approximately EUR 1.3 billion in Q1. In addition to the run-rate increase, we benefited from more than EUR 400 million of catch-up net sales in the quarter. We have now concluded our smartphone licensing renewal cycle with no major renewals due for a number of years. This means Nokia Technologies has entered a period of stability. The business will now focus its resources on expanding in new growth areas with the next goal to increase our annual licensing net sales run-rate to EUR 1.4 to 1.5 billion in the mid-term.

We have been executing quickly on the operating model changes we announced back in October along with our cost savings roadmap. These actions, combined with our expectation for improved net sales growth in the second half of the year, supported by our order backlog, mean we are solidly on track to achieve our full year comparable operating profit outlook of EUR 2.3 to 2.9 billion and free cash flow conversion of 30% to 60%.


EUR million (except for EPS in EUR) Q1'24 Q1'23 YoY change Constant currency YoY change
Reported results        
Net sales 4 667 5 859 (20)% (19)%
Gross margin % 47.9% 37.5% 1 040bps  
Research and development expenses (1 135) (1 108) 2%  
Selling, general and administrative expenses (708) (729) (3)%  
Operating profit 400 426 (6)%  
Operating margin % 8.6% 7.3% 130bps  
Profit for the period 438 289 52%  
EPS, diluted 0.08 0.05 60%  
Net cash and interest-bearing financial investments 5 137 4 304 19%  
Comparable results        
Net sales 4 667 5 859 (20)% (19)%
Gross margin % 48.6% 37.7% 1 090bps  
Research and development expenses (1 086) (1 093) (1)%  
Selling, general and administrative expenses (596) (642) (7)%  
Operating profit 597 479 25%  
Operating margin % 12.8% 8.2% 460bps  
Profit for the period 501 342 46%  
EPS, diluted 0.09 0.06 50%  
ROIC(1) 10.8% 15.8% (500)bps  

1 Comparable ROIC = Comparable operating profit after tax, last four quarters / invested capital, average of last five quarters ending balances. Refer to the Performance measures section in Nokia Corporation Interim Report for Q1 2024 for details.

Business group results Network 
Cloud and Network Services Nokia 
Group Common and Other
EUR million Q1'24 Q1'23 Q1'24 Q1'23 Q1'24 Q1'23 Q1'24 Q1'23 Q1'24 Q1'23
Net sales 1 662 2 248 1 577 2 567 652 760 757 242 23 48
YoY change (26)%   (39)%   (14)%   213%   (52)%  
Constant currency YoY change (26)%   (37)%   (13)%   216%   (53)%  
Gross margin % 36.8% 38.0% 42.4% 33.8% 35.9% 32.8% 100.0% 100.0% (4.3)% (12.5)%
Operating profit/(loss) 82 344 (42) 137 (27) (20) 658 149 (75) (131)
Operating margin % 4.9% 15.3% (2.7)% 5.3% (4.1)% (2.6)% 86.9% 61.6% (326.1)% (272.9)%



Under the authorization by the Annual General Meeting held on 3 April 2024, the Board of Directors may resolve on the distribution of an aggregate maximum of EUR 0.13 per share to be paid in respect of financial year 2023. The authorization will be used to distribute dividend and/or assets from the reserve for invested unrestricted equity in four installments during the authorization period, in connection with the quarterly results, unless the Board decides otherwise for a justified reason.

On 18 April 2024, the Board resolved to distribute a dividend of EUR 0.04 per share. The dividend record date is on 23 April 2024 and the dividend will be paid on 3 May 2024. The actual dividend payment date outside Finland will be determined by the practices of the intermediary banks transferring the dividend payments.

Following this announced distribution, the Board’s remaining distribution authorization is a maximum of EUR 0.09 per share.

Share buyback program

In January 2024, Nokia’s Board of Directors initiated a share buyback program to repurchase shares to return up to EUR 600 million of cash to shareholders in tranches over a period of two years. The first EUR 300 million phase of the share buyback program started in March 2024 and it will end at the latest by 18 December 2024. Under this phase, Nokia has by 31 March 2024 repurchased 3 290 248 of its own shares at an average price per share of approximately EUR 3.27.


  Full Year 2024
Comparable operating profit(1) EUR 2.3 billion to EUR 2.9 billion
Free cash flow(1) 30% to 60% conversion from comparable operating profit

1Please refer to Performance measures section in Nokia Corporation Interim Report for Q1 2024 for a full explanation of how these terms are defined.

The outlook, long-term targets and all of the underlying outlook assumptions described below are forward-looking statements subject to a number of risks and uncertainties as described or referred to in the Risk Factors section later in this release. Along with Nokia's official outlook targets provided above, below are outlook assumptions by business group that support the group level outlook.

  Nokia business group assumptions (full year 2024)
  Net sales growth (constant currency) Operating margin
Network Infrastructure +2% to +8% 11.5% to 14.5%
Mobile Networks -15% to -10% 1.0% to 4.0%
Cloud and Network Services -2% to +3% 6.0% to 9.0%

Nokia provides the following approximate outlook assumptions for additional items concerning 2024:

  Full year 2024 Comment
Seasonality H2 weighted Nokia continues to expect weak profit generation in the first half followed by a significantly stronger H2 in Network Infrastructure, Mobile Networks and Cloud and Network Services in 2024. Since 2016 the average Q2 sequential increase in net sales has been 5% in these businesses combined (driven by Network Infrastructure and Mobile Networks) and Nokia expects to see a greater than average sequential increase in Q2 2024 considering the low level of activity in Q1.
Nokia Technologies operating profit at least
EUR 1.4 billion
Nokia expects cash generation in Nokia Technologies to be EUR 700 million below operating profit in 2024 due to prepayments received in 2023. From 2025 onwards Nokia expects greater alignment between cash generation and operating profit in Nokia Technologies.
Group Common and Other operating expenses EUR 350 million This includes central function costs which are expected to be largely stable at approximately EUR 200 million and an increase in investment in long-term research to approximately EUR 150 million. Group Common and Other will also account for any future revaluation impacts of venture fund investments with no assumption made on this so far.
Comparable financial income and expenses EUR 0 to positive EUR 100 million (update) Reflecting improved cash generation in Q1 and interest rates remaining higher than previously expected (increasing interest income) we now expect an improved financial income and expense result.
Comparable income tax rate ~25%  
Cash outflows related to income taxes EUR 450 million (update)  
Capital Expenditures EUR 600 million  


Nokia's current targets for 2026 are outlined below. Nokia sees further opportunities to increase margins beyond 2026 and believes an operating margin of 14% remains achievable over the longer term.

Net sales Grow faster than the market
Comparable operating margin(1) ≥ 13%
Free cash flow(1) 55% to 85% conversion from comparable operating profit

1 Please refer to Performance measures section in Nokia Corporation Interim Report for Q1 2024 report for a full explanation of how these terms are defined.

The comparable operating margin target for Nokia group is built on the following assumptions by business group for 2026:

Network Infrastructure 12 - 15% operating margin
Mobile Networks 6 - 9% operating margin
Cloud and Network Services 7 - 10% operating margin
Nokia Technologies Operating profit more than EUR 1.1 billion
Group common and other Approximately EUR 300 million of operating expenses


Nokia and its businesses are exposed to a number of risks and uncertainties which include but are not limited to:

  • Competitive intensity, which is expected to continue at a high level as some competitors seek to take share;
  • Changes in customer network investments related to their ability to monetize the network;
  • Our ability to ensure competitiveness of our product roadmaps and costs through additional R&D investments;
  • Our ability to procure certain standard components and the costs thereof, such as semiconductors;
  • Disturbance in the global supply chain;
  • Impact of inflation, increased global macro-uncertainty, major currency fluctuations and higher interest rates;
  • Potential economic impact and disruption of global pandemics;
  • War or other geopolitical conflicts, disruptions and potential costs thereof;
  • Other macroeconomic, industry and competitive developments;
  • Timing and value of new, renewed and existing patent licensing agreements with licensees;
  • Results in brand and technology licensing; costs to protect and enforce our intellectual property rights; on-going litigation with respect to licensing and regulatory landscape for patent licensing;
  • The outcomes of on-going and potential disputes and litigation;
  • Timing of completions and acceptances of certain projects;
  • Our product and regional mix;
  • Uncertainty in forecasting income tax expenses and cash outflows, over the long-term, as they are also subject to possible changes due to business mix, the timing of patent licensing cash flow and changes in tax legislation, including potential tax reforms in various countries and OECD initiatives;
  • Our ability to utilize our Finnish deferred tax assets and their recognition on our balance sheet;
  • Our ability to meet our sustainability and other ESG targets, including our targets relating to greenhouse gas emissions;

as well the risk factors specified under Forward-looking statements of this release, and our 2023 annual report on Form 20-F published on 29 February 2024 under Operating and financial review and prospects-Risk factors.


Certain statements herein that are not historical facts are forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements reflect Nokia's current expectations and views of future developments and include statements regarding: A) expectations, plans, benefits or outlook related to our strategies, projects, product launches, growth management, licenses, sustainability and other ESG targets, operational key performance indicators and decisions on market exits; B) expectations, plans or benefits related to future performance of our businesses (including the expected impact, timing and duration of potential global pandemics, geopolitical conflicts and the general or regional macroeconomic conditions on our businesses, our supply chain, the timing of market changes or turning points in demand and our customers’ businesses) and any future dividends and other distributions of profit; C) expectations and targets regarding financial performance and results of operations, including market share, prices, net sales, income, margins, cash flows, cost savings, the timing of receivables, operating expenses, provisions, impairments, taxes, currency exchange rates, hedging, investment funds, inflation, product cost reductions, competitiveness, revenue generation in any specific region, and licensing income and payments; D) ability to execute, expectations, plans or benefits related to changes in organizational structure and operating model; E) impact on revenue with respect to litigation/renewal discussions; and F) any statements preceded by or including “continue”, “believe”, “commit”, “envisage”, “estimate”, “expect”, “aim”, “influence”, “will”, “target”, “likely”, “intend”, “may”, “could”, “would”, “forecast”, “plan” or similar expressions. These forward-looking statements are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties, many of which are beyond our control, which could cause our actual results to differ materially from such statements. These statements are based on management’s best assumptions and beliefs in light of the information currently available to them. These forward-looking statements are only predictions based upon our current expectations and views of future events and developments and are subject to risks and uncertainties that are difficult to predict because they relate to events and depend on circumstances that will occur in the future. Factors, including risks and uncertainties that could cause these differences, include those risks and uncertainties identified in the Risk Factors above.


  • Nokia's webcast will begin on 18 April 2024 at 11.30 a.m. Finnish time (EEST). The webcast will last approximately 60 minutes.
  • The webcast will be a presentation followed by a Q&A session. Presentation slides will be available for download at
  • A link to the webcast will be available at
  • Media representatives can listen in via the link, or alternatively call +1-412-317-5619.


  • Nokia plans to publish its second quarter and half year 2024 results on 18 July 2024.
  • Nokia plans to publish its third quarter and January-September 2024 results on 17 October 2024.

About Nokia

At Nokia, we create technology that helps the world act together.

As a B2B technology innovation leader, we are pioneering networks that sense, think and act by leveraging our work across mobile, fixed and cloud networks. In addition, we create value with intellectual property and long-term research, led by the award-winning Nokia Bell Labs.

Service providers, enterprises and partners worldwide trust Nokia to deliver secure, reliable and sustainable networks today – and work with us to create the digital services and applications of the future.


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Maria Vaismaa, Global Head of External Communications

Investor Relations
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