Nokia completes divestment of Vertu luxury mobile phone business to EQT VI

Telecom Lead Europe:  Nokia has completed the divestment of its Vertu luxury phone unit to Swedish private-equity firm EQT Partners AB.

Vertu luxury phones

The divestment is valued for around $250 million.

Nokia to sell 90% stake in luxury phone business Vertu to EQT VI

The transaction was originally announced on June 14, 2012.  As part of the transaction, approximately 1,000 employees have transferred with Vertu. Nokia retains a 10 percent minority shareholding in Vertu.

The move to sell off Vertu was a part of Nokia’s divestment strategy and turnaround plan. The company is shedding non-core businesses as it struggles to turnaround its core smartphone operations.

England-based Vertu is known for its jewel-bedecked mobile phones that sell for an average price of more than 5,000 euros.  The company was started by Nokia’s then-chief designer Frank Nuovo in 1998, is the dominant player in the luxury-phone sector.

This year, Vertu’s share declined almost 40 percent. Earlier, some reports suggested that the Finnish handset manufacturer appointed Goldman Sachs to oversee the sale of its UK subsidiary.

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