Nokia-founded luxury phone maker Vertu shuts down manufacturing arm


This closure will also lead to the loss of 200 jobs in the UK. Vertu used leather, alligator and lizard skin, precious metals, titanium, and jewels, as well as synthetic sapphire for its screens. While the prices of some of its smartphones were often in the tens of thousands of dollars, its feature phones weren't necessarily more affordable, with the recently launched SIGNATURE Cobra being introduced with a $360,000 price tag. Vertu allowed customers to speak to the people who have built their phone.

Each concierge was available via voice, email and live chat, while a built-in Vertu Life app offered exclusive access to sporting events and private members' clubs worldwide.

Vertu has sold a number of insanely priced smartphones over the past few years with certain models landing at a starting price of over $9,000.

When Vertu was sold to Uzan, the company was already had unpaid bills, pending salaries and debts of £128 million ($165.5 million).

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Vertu's 178 United Kingdom staff, mostly based at the manufacturing plant in Hampshire, have not been paid for June.

Mr Uzan, who is now living in exile in Paris, then meant to buy Vertu back.

Its owner Murat Hakan Uzan, a Turkish exile based in Paris who owns the Vertu brand separately, had sought to buy the company out of administration in a pre-packaged deal.

But at the High Court on Monday, the application was withdrawn and Vertu later said it was "truly saddened" it could not save the business.

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With Vertu's manufacturing division gone, Uzan will hold onto the company brand, design licenses, and technology.

"They hand make the phone at incredibly low volumes and they were incredibly high-priced", Fogg said, noting that the use of synthetic sapphire and such unusual materials may also make the production process hard.

The jobs of almost 200 United Kingdom workers at the firm will be lost after an ambitious rescue plan by a Turkish millionaire failed to keep the company afloat.

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