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Nokia in Italian pact to bolster services

02 июня 2008

Nokia is set to further strengthen its mobile internet business by forming a revenue-sharing agreement with Buongiorno, the world’s largest mobile content provider, in a deal that could be announced as early as Monday.

The Finnish group will put Buongiorno’s BlinkoGold mobile site, which carries video, music, graphics and games content, on the Download! application which is found on 10 Nokia devices, including the popular N95, N70 and N82 models.

The agreement marks Nokia’s latest salvo in its battle to establish a leading position among large technology and telecom providers by providing a range of services.

The Italian group, which is listed in Milan with a market capitalisation of €200m ($310m), is hoping that the latest deal will enable it to achieve its 2008 revenue targets of €330m-€350m, nearly double its 2007 figure of €175m.

It has redesigned its software in preparation for the next level of mobile content services, including social networking and targeted mobile marketing.

Meanwhile, the revenue-sharing agreement between Nokia, the world’s biggest mobile phone maker, and Buongiorno also indicates renewed interest in mobile content sites.

Growth in mobile content in many western countries has moderated in recent years as demand for ringtones and wallpaper tailed off and regulators clamped down on industry selling techniques.

The service will be initially rolled out in Italy, followed by Spain, Austria, Switzerland, Turkey, France, Brazil, Argentina, India, the US, China and Russia.

Last October, Nokia announced its largest-ever deal by agreeing to buy Navteq, a US mapping and navigation company, for $8.1bn.

In December, it unveiled plans for its Comes With Music service, a rival to Apple’s iTunes, under which people will be able to buy mobiles giving them access to Universal Music’s entire back catalogue for up to one year.

Nokia’s Download! service enables users to manage and download PC content on to mobile phones. When the device is connected to a PC, the software automatically synchronises with the device.

Rivals are quickly working out similar collaboration deals. Vodafone earlier this year made its maiden wireless internet deal by agreeing to pay £25m for Zyb, a Danish social networking company.

Источник: Financial Times

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