Vertu shutters UK operations

first_img Saleha joined Mobile World Live in October 2014 as a reporter and works across all e-newsletters – creating content, writing blogs and reports as well as conducting feature interviews…More Read more Mobile Mix: IFA gets interactive LG sues TCL over LTE patents TCL eyes value sector with CES duo, teases 2021 range AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to LinkedInLinkedInLinkedInShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to MoreAddThisMore 13 JUL 2017 Tags TCLVertu Relatedcenter_img Devices Boutique smartphone maker Vertu’s UK manufacturing operation will be shut down, putting 200 people out of a job, Financial Times (FT) reported, just four months after it was sold to a member of an “exiled and secretive Turkish business dynasty” in a deal worth $50 million.Attempts by the new owner to buy the company out of administration failed, FT reported, as have attempts to resuscitate the business by cutting the price of its non-customised handsets from £10,000 and above, to between £4,000 and £7,000.In March, Baferton, a Cyprus-registered company, acquired the Vertu business from previous owner, China-based Godin Holdings.Baferton was funded by Hakan Uzan, part of a Turkish family with some history in the mobile industry.Uzan will keep the Vertu brand, technology and design licences, and plans to rebuild company, FT said.Vertu was rumoured to be on the brink of administration in 2016. The company failed to file its 2015 accounts and, after the acquisition was complete, Uzan reportedly discovered it had an accounting deficit of £128 million.The manufacturing arm was placed into administration before Uzan tried to buy back the business for £1.9 million.News of the demise of the UK manufacturing arm comes a matter of weeks after Vertu agreed a deal with smartphone maker TCL, covering the use of “advanced and innovative technology” from the Chinese company for “30,000 handcrafted Vertu phones”, to be produced at the UK plant.With an entry selling price of £7,500, more than 500,000 devices have been sold by Vertu since its first unit shipped in 2002. It counts more than 225,000 registered users.The company was set up in 1998, when it was part of Nokia, before being sold to private equity company EQT in 2012 and then to Godin three years later. HomeDevicesNews Vertu shutters UK operations Saleha Riaz Previous ArticleGrowth of personal assistant apps “spotty and sluggish”Next ArticleWBA chief says Wi-Fi key to affordable connectivity Authorlast_img read more