Refuting reports that it has shut shop, Noida-based Ringing Bells — the makers of the world’s cheapest smartphone ‘Freedom 251’ (less that US $4) — on Thursday said that they were very much in the market and operating as earlier.
A report in TeleAnalysis, a leading news portal on the telecommunication and technology industry, claimed on Thursday that Ringing Bells owners have shut down the company and opened a new firm named MDM Electronics Private Limited which is registered in Kailash Colony in New Delhi.
“Mohit Goel who was the MD of Ringing Bells will remain in the post in the new company as well. Shashank Goel, also a part of Ringing Bells will remain here and Ashok Chaddha, the face of Ringing Bells, will be the President of MDM. Meanwhile, CEO Dharna Goel had also reportedly quit the company,” the TeleAnalysis report said.
According to Ringing Bells, MDM Electronics is a separate entity distinct from it. “At Ringing Bells we have our clear business objectives which we have shared earlier with everyone and we are sticking to it,” a spokesperson said in a company statement.
The company said that the delivery of ‘Freedom 251’ will be made by retailers who will get the products, in turn, from the distributors and they, in turn, from the company as is the standard practice in trade.
“In addition, as has been underpinned and re-clarified on several occasions, the sales are only on cash on delivery basis. The company is making efforts to deliver more ‘Freedom 251’ in recent months,” the spokesperson added.
After announcing that it has delivered 5,000 ‘Freedom 251’ smartphones in July, Ringing Bells had said it would deliver 65,000 more to those who had booked the device in cash on delivery (COD) mode.
After that, no new numbers were shared and it appeared the initial hype had fizzled out. The company has since forayed into making TVs and other smartphones, burying the Freedom 251 dream.
In the fresh statement, the company said that they have so far delivered around 70,000 devices in states such as West Bengal, Haryana, Himachal, Bihar, Uttarakhand, New Delhi, Punjab, Jammu & Kashmir, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Jharkhand, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh.
Clarifying about the resignation of Dharna Goel, the spokesperson said that now Anmol Goel, who is one of the founder directors, was looking after the affairs of the company.