Russian Smartphone Maker Yota Devices Denies Canadian Relocation Plans

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By Esther Tanquintic-Misa | August 12, 2014 3:15 PM EST

Yota Devices, a Russian smartphone maker, has flatly denied reports that flaunted on Monday it is relocating its headquarters to the Blackberry region of Canada.

REUTERS
Russia's President Vladimir Putin talks to reporters during a meeting in Brasilia July 16, 2014. Putin warned on Wednesday that U.S. sanctions will take relations with Russia to a "dead end" and damage U.S. business interests in his country. Picture taken July 16, 2014. REUTERS/Alexei Nikolskyi/RIA Novosti/Kremlin

The Financial Post circulated that Yota will relocate to either to Toronto or Waterloo in Canada by end of the year because of lower costs, tax benefits and government support. Moreover, Yota sees an abundant recruitment opportunities from the displaced talent pool of Blackberry Employees.

"YotaPhone is and will remain a Russian product, entirely projected and developed in Russia," Larisa Pogonina, the company's representative, told Lenta.ru.

A statement on the company's website also stressed they are just "opening an office in Canada, not shifting operations."

Pogonina further explained that the Financial Post misinterpreted what CEO Vlad Martynov said in an interview that the company will soon set up a new representative office in Toronto or Waterloo in Ontario. This will indeed be by the end of 2014.

Yota, best known for its Android-based smartphone which have screens on both sides of the handset, is the consumer electronics arm of Russia's largest LTE mobile network operator. The proposed Canadian branch office is meant to facilitate the expansion of its second-generation YotaPhone into the North and South American markets.

"We are not moving to Canada, we are not changing the legal address, we remain registered in Russia and continue to pay taxes in Russia."

The Canadian office will be the first in North America. It is groomed to manage the sales and marketing in the North and Latin American regions.

The company targets to garner a 30 per cent sales record in the U.S., home to about 170 million smartphone users. It will start selling its smartphones in the fourth quarter of 2014.

Yota currently has six foreign offices that control sales in Europe, Africa, the United Arab Emirates, Singapore and Asia.

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(Photo: REUTERS / Alexei Nikolskyi/RIA Novosti/Kremlin )
Russia's President Vladimir Putin talks to reporters during a meeting in Brasilia July 16, 2014. Putin warned on Wednesday that U.S. sanctions will take relations with Russia to a "dead end" and damage U.S. business interests in his country. Picture taken July 16, 2014. REUTERS/Alexei Nikolskyi/RIA Novosti/Kremlin
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