Nokia indicated it expects to raise its financial outlook for 2021 due to continued strength in its business, as it begins to see progress with an ongoing turnaround strategy instigated by CEO and president Pekka Lundmark (pictured).

The vendor took the unusual step of releasing a statement revealing plans to increase its 2021 outlook, without providing any other information beyond explaining it would reveal full details in its second quarter results on 29 July.

Lundmark said the vendor was progressing well with a three-phased plan to achieve sustainable, profitable growth and technology leadership laid out at its Capital Markets Day in March, and its H1 performance had shown evidence of this in “cost control” and strength in a number of markets.

“We continue to expect some headwinds in the second half as we previously highlighted but our performance in the first half provides a good foundation for the full year,” he said.

Nokia predicted full year net sales to reach €20.6 billion to €21.8 billion, to be cash flow positive, an underlying operating margin of 7 per cent to 10 per cent and a return on invested capital of 10 per cent to 15 per cent.

Lundmark shook things up almost immediately after taking over the job from Rajeev Suri in August 2020, seeking to turn around the company’s fortunes, instigating a restructure of its business units and setting aside more funds to fund 5G R&D.

He also said Nokia would invest “whatever it takes to win in 5G”, as it faced up to competition from Ericsson and Huawei.