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Today in the Fortune 500: Nokia needs Microsoft, Coke’s refreshing sales numbers and Goldman Sachs admits its pre-crisis asset problem

February 10, 2011, 5:59 PM UTC
aluminum Coke bottles
Image by define23 via Flickr

The Fortune 500 comes out just once a year, but the companies on it make headlines every day. Here then are today’s highlights of news and happenings coming from the biggest names in business.

By Shelley DuBois, reporter

NOKIA IS BURNING, metaphorically, according to a company memo from its newly hired CEO Stephen Elop. He has said that the company will need a tremendous overhaul to get back on track, part of which will probably mean partnering with either Microsoft (MSFT), Google (GOOG) or both to put a stronger operating system in its devices. [Wall Street Journal]

COKE EXPANDS in all of its major markets for the first time in five years. The company bought a new, North American bottler last year, which apparently contributed to its ability to cut costs and better control distribution. Coca-Cola (K) earned a net income of $5.77 billion for the fourth quarter of 2010, up from $1.54 billion during the same time last year. [New York Times]

NOT ENOUGH LIQUIDS was Goldman Sach’s (GS) problem pre-crisis, the company’s Chief Financial Officer David A. Viniar said during a conference in Miami. “It was a good lesson learned,” he said. The lesson being to buy assets that you can actually sell. [Bloomberg Businessweek]

THIS TIME WE MEAN IT Boeing CEO Jim McNerney has said that despite delays on its long-anticipated 787 Dreamliner, the company will meet its delivery target by the third quarter of this year. McNerney blames supply chain hold-ups for many of the Dreamliner delays, a problem he intends to circumvent by doing more of the engineering and labor for future models from within Boeing (BA). [Reuters]

PFIZER’S LEFTOVER SANDWICH The drug company has left a gaping employment hole in the wake of its retreat away from aggressive research and development. Now, a task force is meeting to scramble to find jobs for the people formerly employed at Pfizer’s (PFE) major plant in the UK. The plant, located in a town called Sandwich, employed 2,400 people. [BBC]

LOOKIN’ GOOD, HP Hewlett-Packard (HPQ) decided to buck the best-selling tech trend of either being Apple (APPL) or using an operating system by Microsoft or Google, and bought its own OS via Palm. The result is some good-looking gadgets. A breakdown of why Apple may need to step its game up. [Fast Company]