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Microsoft Takes $7 Billion Loss on Nokia

Los Angeles Clippers owner and former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, right, Jeff Raikes, former CEO of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, left, and Connie Ballmer, attend a baseball game between the Seattle Mariners and the Los Angeles Angels, Sunday, May 15, 2016, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

I said at the time that then-Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer’s 2013 purchase of Nokia for $7.2 billion was a big mistake, but I didn’t know exactly how big.

Now we know:

Microsoft is selling the feature phone business it acquired from Nokia back in 2013 to a subsidiary of Chinese manufacturer Foxconn for $350 million, it announced today.

At the same time former owner Nokia said it has inked a deal to license its brand to HMD Global, a new Finnish company run by ex-Nokia and Microsoft devices staff, to “create a new generation of Nokia-branded mobile phones and tablets”.

Ballmer’s 14-year tenure as CEO will be remembered for wasted time, wasted effort, and now for a wasted $7 billion dollars.