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Sunday, 30th November 2008
In Business In Japan,

Nokia: Luxury mobiles only for Japan

Mobile company Nokia has announced that it will discontinue marketing its phones in Japan, with the exception of its luxury Vertu line.

Despite Nokia being the world's largest manufacturer of mobile phones, the company has struggled to infiltrate the Japanese market in the same way as it has globally in terms of sales, according to the International Herald Tribune.

Nokia executive vice president Timo Ihamuotila is quoted by the BBC as saying: "In the current global economic climate, we have concluded that the continuation of our investment in Japan-specific localised products is no longer sustainable."

Japan has the fourth-largest market in the world for mobile phones, with over 85 per cent of the population owning one, equating to over 109 million people.

Despite their popularity as a personal accessory, however, a new higher-priced sales plan for the country is expected to reduce sales of mobile phones by approximately 20 per cent annually.

The Vertu line offers high-end designer phones, custom-made for the user and individual models command prices of between 3,500 and 100,000 yen.

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Luxury trains to be introduced in Kyushu (23rd February 2011)