Nokia Closes Major China Store and 2 Hot Stocks to Watch

Alcatel-Lucent (NYSE:ALU): Alcatel-Lucent has announced an effort called Nuage Networks, which will sell gear for software defined networks, or SDN. According to the company, trials of the unit’s “Virtualized Services Platform” will start this month with U.S. and European telcos, with worldwide availability by the middle of the year. According to Barron’s, Evercore Partners analyst Mark McKechnie, who was at the event, the ploy is a “sound” strategy. The company is hoping to make it easier for companies to buy servers instead of buying routers from Cisco Systems (NASDAQ:CSCO), etc.

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BlackBerry (NASDAQ:BBRY): Export Development Canada, the Canadian export credit agency, has announced that it will offer a 200 million euro, or $256 million, working capital facility to wireless operator Telefonica (NYSE:TEF) to procure BlackBerry smartphones, services, and solutions. Earlier this week, Kantar Worldpanel Comtech said that BlackBerry’s share of handset sales had fallen to just 0.7 percent in the 12 weeks to the end of February, down from 3.6 percent a year ago.

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Nokia (NYSE:NOK): According to ZDNet, Nokia has closed its flagship store in China. The Shanghai store, which opened in 2007, will shut down at the end of March. “For a while now, Nokia has been focusing on growing its presence in operator and third-party retail outlets, rather than through our own physical stores,” a company representative told the website. “We are, of course, also continuously beefing up our online presence.” As it tries to turn its flailing fortunes around, Nokia is also trying hard to regain lost ground in China.

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