Friday, March 30, 2012
Canadian company has long dominated the corporate
Struggling Black Berry mobile maker Research in Motion Ltd said Thursday that it will cede most consumer markets after failing to compete with flashier touch-screen mobile phones such as Apple’s iPhone and models that run Google’s Android mobile software. Instead, Research in Motion Ltd said it will return to its roots and focus on business customers, many of whom prefer BlackBerrys for their security. Research in Motion Ltd has had limited success trying to enter consumer markets in recent years, and Research in Motion Ltd CEO MrThorsten Heins said a turnaround required “substantial change.” “We plan to refocus on the enterprise business and capitalize on our leading position in this segment,” Heins said. “We believe that BlackBerry cannot succeed if we tried to be everybody’s darling and all things to all people. Therefore, we plan to build on our strength.” Also Thursday, RIM said former co-CEO Jim Balsillie has resigned from its board. David Yach, chief technology officer for software, and Jim Rowan, chief operating officer for global operations, also are leaving in a management shakeup. The Canadian company has long dominated the corporate smart mobile phone market, with its Black Berry mobile known for their security and reliability as email devices. President Barack Obama even refused to part with his BlackBerry after he took office. Research in Motion Ltd has sought to expand its appeal to consumers, but it has had trouble because the phones aren’t perceived to be as sexy as its chief competitors. Research in Motion Ltdhas been counting on improvements with its forthcoming Black Berry mobile 10 system, but that has faced multiple delays. Black Berrys Research in Motion Ltd also lag Apple iPhones or Android phones when it comes to running third-party applications.
For that reason, Black Berrys are even losing ground in the business world, as employees demand Apple iPhones or Android devices over Black Berrys. Apple sold 37 million Apple iPhones in the last three months of 2011—more than what RIM shipped in the past three quarters combined. RIM shipped 11.1 million BlackBerrysResearch in Motion Ltd in the latest quarter, which ended March 3. Researchin Motion Ltd also bombed in its efforts to produce a tablet computer to compete with Apple’s iPad. Among other things, the PlayBook received negative reviews because it launched without an email program and the popular messaging service BlackBerry Messenger. In December, the tablets that originally cost dollar 500 were selling for dollar 200, below the cost of making them. Black Berry mobile RIM said it was exploring partnerships and other opportunities for its existing consumer business to focus on the corporate customers. “We can’t do everything ourselves, but we can do what we’re good at,” MrThorsten Heins said. Asked about a possible sale of the company, MrThorsten Heins said “it is not the main direction we are pursuing right now.” MrThorsten Heins, who took over the company in January, made the remarks during a conference call after RIM announced quarterly results that fell short of Wall Street expectations. Net loss was dollar 125 million, or 24 cents a share, in the fiscal fourth quarter. This compares with dollar 934 million, or dollar 1.78 per share, a year ago. After excluding one-time items, adjusted income was 80 cents per share, a penny short of expectations from analysts polled by Fact Set. Revenue fell 25% to dollar 4.2 billion from dollar 5.6 billion. Analysts were expecting dollar 4.5 billion. For the full fiscal year, Research inMotion Ltd earned dollar 1.2 billion, or dollar 2.22 a share, on revenue of dollar 18.4 billion. That compares with net income of dollar 3.4 billion, or dollar 6.34 a share, on revenue of dollar 19.9 billion in fiscal 2011.
Source: Japan Today