Wileyfox, the UK smartphone firm that went into administration in February after its Russian backer pulled the plug, has been rescued by British consumer electronics firm Santok Group, which trades under the STK brand name.
Back in February, things were looking bleak for Wileyfox after the company entered administration just three years after making its debut.
"We are looking at prospective interested parties to buy the goodwill and IPR [intellectual property rights] associated with the business to take forward the operations in Europe," Andrew Andronikou, who works for business advisory firm Quantuma, said at the time.
Though there have been no updates from the firm for more than a month, TechRadar reports that, as of today, Ruislip-based STK has agreed a licensing deal with the Wileyfox Group to sell the firm's handsets in the UK, Europe and South Africa.
As well as flogging Wileyfox's cheap smartphones, STK will also offer after-sales care and services. This will include an adapted version of its STK Care app that will provide 24/7 live chat support to Wileyfox device owners, and the company has confirmed that it will honour warranties that are still in date.
According to the report, STK plans to continue selling the Wileyfox Swift 2, Swift 2 Plus and Swift 2 X and is planning to launch new Wileyfox handsets in the second half of the year.
What's more, while a Wileyfox staffer claimed last month that current device owners probably wouldn't receive any future OS updates, STK has committed to rolling out Android 8.1 to the existing Swift 2 range.
Henri Salameh, STK's Commerical Director, told TechRadar that the firm saw a "good opportunity not only to continue the production of the Wileyfox handsets and reinstate after sale and warranty support, but also to save jobs in UK and Europe while merging two strong UK brands together to operate under one roof."
Salameh notes that STK will keep its own smartphone porfolio separate from Wileyfox: "Wileyfox was playing at a slightly higher price point and was a stronger online presence [than STK].
"Merging the two businesses allows us to become even stronger online ... as well as significantly improving our production channels, sales reach and customer service offering."
STK is a brand name owned by the Santok Group. It currently offers a range of low-end smartphones and feature phones, such as the Evo, Life 7 4G and the royal gold coloured M Phone.
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