Finish-based Nokia is making an exit from Japan this month. It will close down all its 4 stores selling high end Vertu mobile phones costing as much as 20 million yen (RM750,000).
Vertu said in a statement Wednesday that it was “withdrawing from the Japanese market” to better focus on priority businesses. It thanked business partners, said its Tokyo office will fold by the end of this year, but promised to continue to do work with Japanese craftsmen in its business elsewhere.
Nokia phones have never been that popular in Japan, where the iPhone from Apple is hugely popular in addition to offerings from Japanese electronics makers such as Sharp Corp.
Since 1998, Nokia has been the world’s biggest seller of mobile phones, but in the first quarter of this year Apple overtook it as the world’s top handset vendor in revenue. Nokia’s market share continues to fall, and at 29% in the first quarter, is at its lowest level since the late 1990s.