Rumor Mill: Nokia Puts Vertu Up for Sale
The company appointed Goldman Sachs to oversee the sale
Financial Times reports that the Finnish company appointed Goldman Sachs to overlook the possible sale of the Vertu brand sometime next year.
There are no confirmations from Nokia or Goldman Sachs, as both companies declined to comment for the moment. More details on the move will probably be announced as soon as Nokia finds a buyer for Vertu.
Although Vertu’s revenue is estimated to be between 200 million EUR ($268 million) and 300 million EUR ($402 million), the company has yet to be valued.
According to Financial Times, sources close to the matter confirmed that several private equity groups have shown some interest, but there’s no clear offer for the moment.
Vertu might also be attractive for various luxury brands, especially companies specialized in watches or other luxurious devices, which could complement their business easier with Vertu’s phones.
The reasons behind Nokia’s decision to sell its luxurious subsidiary are unclear for the moment especially that the company performed rather well in comparison with Nokia’s business.
Vertu’s handsets are popular in Russia, Asia and Middle East, where Nokia’s luxury subsidiary still has the strongest sales, though its devices do not include the latest technologies available in the market.
In fact, apart from the premium materials, nothing would recommend Vertu’s handsets to an end-user. These phones are aimed at customers who afford, and are willing, to shell out at least 3,000 EUR (4,000 USD) for a Vertu mobile phone.
However, Vertu’s phones come with a little more than just premium materials. The company offers each customer who purchased one of its handsets the so-called concierge service, which basically keeps them connected with a dedicated team of lifestyle assistants who can help with booking services.