Vivo has about US$59 million in assets seized by Indian tax authorities
Vivo is a top-5 smartphone brand in India, having shipped about 5.5 million units in the country as per the latest figures. However, it has reportedly fallen foul of the country's Enforcement Directorate, an 'economic crimes unit' that acts on behalf of the country's Ministry of Finance.
The Directorate has announced that it has seized no less than INR 4,690,000,000 (~US$59.1 million) from Vivo India "and its 23 associated companies", following raids on 48 of their offices across the country. The assets officially appropriated from the OEM reportedly include INR 660,000,000 (~$8.3 million) worth of fixed deposits; INR 7,300,000 (~$92,000) in cash and even gold bars of 2 kilograms (kg) in mass, found in a total of 119 different bank accounts.
The Enforcement Directorate has revealed it has taken this action in response to findings that Vivo had "remitted" INR 624.76 billion - about $7.9 billion, or ~50% of the company's turnover thus far, out of the country, with its native China as a main destination for this money. This was apparently done to fabricate losses in an attempt at tax evasion.
Some Vivo India executives have even allegedly tried to flee the country over this apparent scandal. It mirrors a similar situation involving Xiaomi's Indian branch, in which that OEM had about $476 million of its deposits frozen by the national Department of Revenue.