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Esa Niinimäki

Chief Legal Officer

b. 1976

As Chief Legal Officer (CLO), Esa heads Nokia’s legal and compliance team and oversees the legal affairs of the entire business, including ethics and governance. He is also the Secretary of Nokia’s Board of Directors.

A lawyer of 20 years’ experience, Esa has developed a track record of transforming governance practices, partnering with business for sustainable legal solutions, advising top leaders and building strong and effective teams. He has a particular interest in value creation in strategy work, ethical leadership and the development of strong relationships with internal and external stakeholders.

Esa became Nokia’s CLO in 2023. Prior to this he spent five years as Deputy CLO and Board Secretary, and, before that, three years as Vice President and General Counsel of Nokia’s Global Services Business Group. He has worked at Nokia continuously since 2007.

Esa’s pre-Nokia legal experience saw him working on mergers and acquisitions, capital markets and financing transactions, both in-house and in private practice.

Esa holds Master’s Degrees in Law from the University of Helsinki, Finland and Fordham University, New York, USA.

Esa is based in Espoo, Finland and has lived and worked in several countries. He is married with three sons and enjoys running, skiing and following sports.

Career history:

  • Interim Chief Legal Officer, Nokia, 2022-2023
  • Deputy Chief Legal Officer, Corporate, and Board Secretary, Nokia, 2018-2023
  • General Counsel, Global Services, Nokia, 2015-2018
  • Head of Corporate Legal, Nokia Solutions and Networks, and Head of Finance & Labor Legal, Nokia, 2013-2015
  • Senior Legal Counsel, Legal and IP, India, Middle East and Africa, Nokia, 2012-2013
  • (Senior) Legal Counsel, Corporate Legal, Nokia, 2007-2011
  • Group Legal Counsel, Metsä Group, 2005-2007
  • Associate Lawyer, White & Case LLP, 2003-2005


Current positions of trust and professional memberships:

  • Member of the Market Practice Board of Securities Market Association, Finland
  • Legal Affairs Committee of the Confederation of Finnish Industries
  • Policy Committee of the Directors’ Institute of Finland