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Nokia looking to selling luxury brand Vertu for 200 million euros

Private equity group EQT Partners interested

Nokia looking to selling luxury brand Vertu for 200 million euros
Nokia is planning to sell its luxury phone brand Vertu in a bid to free up some of its assets, with a deal with Swedish private equity group EQT Partners reportedly close to being finalised.

Vertu, which manufacturers the world's most expensive mobile phones, could be sold for as much as €200 million (around $250 million).

However, commentators claim the success of the deal relies on Nokia's ability to carve Vertu's operations out of its business.

Money matters

Sources claiming to be familiar with the matter say talks are still in progress, with a resolution expected as early as as next week.

Interest had reportedly previously been shown by fellow private equity group Permira, however, though the deal fell through for undisclosed reasons.

It's believed Vertu's sale is designed to get cash flowing through Nokia's business, with the Finnish manufacturer – recently releaved of its position as the world's largest mobile manufacturer by rival Samsung – having invested large sums of its reserves in switching focus from Symbian and MeeGo to Windows Phone.

Vertu's handsets are not a mass market proposition – handsets costing more than $300,000 on occasion - making the sell off a logical one, though Nokia has so far declined to comment.

[source: Reuters]

With a fine eye for detail, Keith Andrew is fuelled by strong coffee, Kylie Minogue and the shapely curve of a san serif font.

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