In July, iconic British phone manufacturer Vertu pulled down its shutters and entered liquidation after the exiled Turkish businessman Murat Hakan Uzan failed to rescue the company from bankruptcy.
The company caused job losses for up to 200 of its employees and now on Friday, Vertu’s museum collection of handsets went to the auction for sale by liquidators. The British luxury phone maker was forced to sell all the contents from its British plant located in Hampshire, in the United Kingdom including awards, ultra-luxury phones, drawings, designs and statues.
Vertu’s Clous De Paris Red Gold Signature phone that were encrusted in jewels and 18-karat gold sold for over £35,600 or USD$46,000.
For those unfamiliar, Vertu was a British boutique phone maker, that was popular among the global rich and famous but yet was unable to attract newer customers, leading to its failure.
The company’s ultra-exorbitant handsets boasted of customised solid gold, sapphire glass, titanium, precious jewels, and alligator leather. For instance, one of luxury phone maker’s Signature handset that were launched for £14,500 (USD$18,750) during its heyday, was sold at the auction for £11,200 (USD$14,500) whereas the ones like Clous De Paris Red Gold Signature phone that were encrusted in jewels and 18-karat gold sold for over £35,600 or USD$46,000.
Albeit all Vertu’s smartphones are now being sold by UK auctioneer G.J. Wisdom and Company, the starting prices are still too expensive to make these luxury devices reachable by the middle-class.
On the whole, it appears that Vertu made a significant amount after selling some of its most precious assets, but the question that remains to be answered is whether it will have enough to pay all its bills.