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Lenovo Brings Mobile Push to Russia With Two Smartphones

Lenovo Group Ltd. (992) started selling smartphones in Russia as China’s second-largest vendor of the devices seeks to extend its global dominance in personal computers to mobile phones and tablets.

Lenovo has started offering its S880 and P700i models in the country, its fifth overseas market for the devices, spokesman Chris Millward said in a telephone interview today, without giving a target for sales.

Chief Executive Officer Yang Yuanqing’s PC maker surpassed Hewlett-Packard Co. (HPQ) last quarter as the world’s largest and Yang has said he intends to seek growth in global sales of mobile devices. Lenovo, which introduced its first touch-screen handset in China in 2010, in the past four months expanded sales to India, Indonesia, Vietnam and the Philippines.

“The company has a good set of offerings that meet emerging-market consumer needs at the right price points,” Stephen Yang, a Hong Kong-based analyst at Sun Hung Kai Financial Ltd., said in an e-mail. “Lenovo’s smartphone strategy aims at large markets where they can achieve scale as buyers switch from feature phones. They believe they can achieve a top-five status in Russia over the next couple of years.”

Lenovo, whose headquarters are in Beijing and Morrisville, North Carolina, rose 0.3 percent to HK$7.09 at the close in Hong Kong trading. The shares have gained 37 percent this year, compared with an 18 percent gain in the benchmark Hang Seng Index.

The company is the second-largest smartphone maker in China and plans to seize the top spot from Samsung Electronics Co., Milko Van Duijl, president for the Asia-Pacific and Latin America regions, said in an interview last month.

It started smartphone sales in Russia earlier this month, Millward said.

Lenovo’s mobile Internet and digital home unit, which makes smartphones, more than doubled revenue to $1.31 billion in the first half of the year. The company’s total sales rose 11 percent to $8.67 billion.

To contact Bloomberg News staff for this story: Edmond Lococo in Beijing at elococo@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Tighe at mtighe4@bloomberg.net

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