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Pantech sold again for a mere $9,000

The South Korean smartphone maker has been sold for a mere 10 million won ($8,800) due to debts and the failure of new ventures.

South Korean smartphone maker Pantech has been sold for 10 million won (around $8,800) due to its heavy debts.

Solid, which bought the firm back in 2015 from its original leadership, said the sale was unavoidable due to worsening financials and demand from shareholders and creditors.

Pantech suspended its smartphone businesses in May this year due to poor performances.

The company survived bankruptcy before Solid and Optis bought the firm two years ago, promising to revive it through Internet of Things (IoT) businesses and expanding abroad to Southeast Asia.

But the businesses failed, and its latest smartphone, IM-100, launched last year, failed to gain momentum in sales.

Pantech has now been sold to KNA Holdings, a specialty firm formed by patent experts. KNA Holdings will shoulder the phone maker's 110 billion won ($97 million) debt.

Solid said the sale will allow the firm to continue to gain revenue through patent royalties to pay back creditors and offer after-sales services to its customers.

Earlier this month, Solid sold Pantech's IoT business to a local equipment maker. It has also been selling its patents since suspending its phone business.

Pantech once formed a triumvirate in smartphones alongside Samsung and LG, once even upending the latter to become runner-up. But rising marketing prices and declining popularity forced it to bankruptcy.

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