Thursday, August 02, 2007

Nokia's blowout

It's not every day that a company with a market cap of $100 billion plus sees its stock price jump 8% in one session. Today Nokia did just that after reporting its 2Q results.

Were its numbers that good? Yes, despite the fact that one of its four engines is not working (its network equipment division, Nokia Siemens), a strong euro and so so performance in its biggest division (mobile phones).

Leaving aside the network division numbers, which are not comparable to previous periods due to the Siemens merger, sales jumped 13% over the year-ago period. But what's extraordinary is that they rose nearly 14% compared to the first quarter. That's 40%+ annual growth going forward. It was driven by strong growth in multimedia devices (fancy 3G phones and PDA's) and enterprise solutions.

I have no idea whether they can keep up this growth rate. And it's certainly a feast and famine industry, with long stretches of little or no growth (2002-2004). Yet, at 21 times earnings, while no bargain, it's certainly not too expensive to cash in on one of the world's leading growth markets.

After all, worldwide cell phone penetration standas at 40%, according to the ITU, with Asia at 30%. So there's still a lot of room for growth.