Nokia, the Finnish IT and technology corporation, said on Tuesday that Tarun Chhabra has been appointed as its country manager in India, effective April 1, 2024. He will succeed Sanjay Malik, who retires on March 31, 2024.

Tarun Chhabra will continue in his role of Head of Mobile Networks Market India in addition to assuming India Country Manager responsibilities,” according to a statement released by the business. “India is such an important market for Nokia and I believe that, in this new role, I will be able to help our customers to benefit from Nokia’s leading technology across our portfolio, at a time when technology is playing a vital role than ever before in the lives of organizations, companies, individuals and societies,” Chhabra said in a statement.

Following Ericsson’s disappointing 2023 financial results, Nokia reported an 8% year-on-year decline in like-for-like revenues to €22.3 billion and a 24% decline in comparable operating profit to €2.38 billion and expects its sales to fall further this year, owing primarily to a sharp decline in mobile network infrastructure revenues.

Nokia is going through a hard stretch, and it would prefer to forget about 2023. It was already feeling the pinch last year as telecoms, notably the three main operators in the United States, reduced their network investment budgets (the two main carriers in India being the exception). As a result, Nokia launched a cost-cutting drive, with up to 14,000 positions being slashed as revenues declined.

The Finnish vendor then suffered a severe blow from one of its primary clients for mobile network infrastructure: AT&T. In November, AT&T announced that it was switching to a nearly single-vendor supplier strategy for its radio access network (RAN) and heavily investing in Open RAN-enabled systems. Ericsson was given that responsibility; see AT&T goes big on Open RAN with Ericsson and Nokia licks its wounds over AT&T’s RAN rejection.

The company has now released a somewhat dismal outlook for the upcoming year as part of its earnings report. This is especially true for its Mobile Networks division, which in 2023 reported full-year revenues of $9.8 billion, down 5% on a constant currency basis from 2022, and an operating profit margin of 7.4%, down from 8.8% in 2022. Nokia projects that the Mobile Networks division’s revenues will drop by 10% to 15% in 2024, bringing the division’s total revenues to between $8.82 billion and $8.33 billion. The division’s operating profit margin is also predicted to drop to between 1% and 4%.