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The bad news keeps streaming in for BlackBerry

The Wall Street Journal reported this week that BlackBerry was on the verge of slashing 40 percent of its workforce. Today, that news has come to fruition as the company announced that it would lay off 4,500 employees. This will leave BlackBerry with 7,000 employees worldwide.
In addition, the Canadian-based company announced some rather disastrous financials as well. We have been reported for quite some time that sales of BB10-based devices (Z10, Q10) have flopped since their introduction earlier this year. But now we know the full extent of the damage -- BlackBerry is taking a non-cash, pre-tax charge of $930 to $960 million primarily due to unsold Z10 smartphones. That figure ranks right up there with Microsoft's nearly $1B charge for its Surface tablets.
When the dust settles on fiscal Q2 2014, BlackBerry is expecting a GAAP net operating loss of $950 to $995 million.

BlackBerry President and CEO Thorsten Heins [Image Source: The Star]
"We are implementing the difficult, but necessary operational changes announced today to address our position in a maturing and more competitive industry, and to drive the company toward profitability," said BlackBerry President and CEO Thorsten Heins. Going forward, we plan to refocus our offering on our end-to-end solution of hardware, software and services for enterprises and the productive, professional end user. This puts us squarely on target with the customers that helped build BlackBerry into the leading brand today for enterprise security, manageability and reliability."

BlackBerry will also transition away from producing consumer-centric smartphones and will instead focus on what it calls "enterprise and prosumer-centric" devices. Its smartphone device-count will drop from six to four, with two high-end and two entry-level smartphones.

Under this new arrangement, the laggard Z10 will become one of the two entry-level models while the newly announced Z30 will fill in one of the "high-end" slots.

It sad that it had to come to this, but it looks as though we are witnessing the implosion of a once great smartphone company.

Source: BlackBerry

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They can read the future?
By sudz on 9/20/13, Rating: 0
RE: They can read the future?
By Brandon Hill on 9/20/2013 4:11:18 PM , Rating: 2
FISCAL Q2 2014

RE: They can read the future?
By Rukkian on 9/20/2013 4:14:43 PM , Rating: 2
Fiscal years are not always the same as calendar years.

RE: They can read the future?
By JasonMick on 9/20/2013 4:16:52 PM , Rating: 4
Shush, it's all a conspiracy by the media to discredit a thriving BB... that's what Pirks and the other BB fans here have been telling me for the last year or so.

Meanwhile back in reality....

As much as it's fun to hate on Stephen Elop for delivering Nokia into Microsoft's hands, you have to admit he looks like a market genius compared to Thorsten Heins. At least Nokia is outselling BB, is profitable, and is setting market trends (a la, the now ubiquitous colorful smartphone).

Heins meanwhile continues to imagine wishfully that his dying company is thriving as he plunges it ever deeper into its freefall. The end is nigh, shareholders need to cash out while there's value left.

RE: They can read the future?
By arazok on 9/20/2013 4:35:19 PM , Rating: 2
In Heins’s defence, I really don’t know what he could have done to save BB. The place was pretty much ruined when he took over.

One might as well have done what he did. Cross your fingers, and hope that BB10 actually turns the ship around. From the best anyone can tell, he looked for buyers before he committed to that strategy, and couldn’t find any.

RE: They can read the future?
By retrospooty on 9/20/2013 4:42:54 PM , Rating: 3
YA, Heinz took the wheel of a sinking ship. Not alot he could have donbe. Balsilie and Lazardis broke it beyond reasonable repair.

RE: They can read the future?
By Mint on 9/20/2013 7:00:38 PM , Rating: 2
Jason has a point, though. If a man of Thorsten's mindset took over Nokia, he would have just continued with Symbian/Meego, since that's what they had in the pipeline.

Such a strategy, IMO, would have been even worse for Nokia. Elop at least got MS to pay them $1B/yr.

RE: They can read the future?
By Solandri on 9/21/2013 3:44:22 PM , Rating: 3
And what if Symbian/Meego would've been a success that relegated Android and iOS to also-rans?

Nobody can reliably predict these things. There's a large element of luck involved, so it's not really fair to judge people based on how things turn out. That'd be like calling the winner of the $400 million Powerball lottery a genius for playing the lottery. And calling everyone who played and lost idiots for making the exact same decision and playing the lottery. See how judging people based on outcomes can result in completely opposite judgments for the exact same decision?

You have to judge people on how good their decisions were based on the information and opportunities they had at the time. You can make the right decisions and still lose, and you can make the wrong decisions and still win. A right decision just increases the probability of success. It does not guarantee it.

RE: They can read the future?
By Mitch101 on 9/20/2013 6:22:10 PM , Rating: 2
Its almost like those threads of how AMD have a Secret CPU that can crush any Intel chip by a mile but wont release it until they need to.

If anyone had such a superman chip they would be selling it. I saw the same scenario reversed when AMD was ahead of Intel a long time ago about Intel's super secret superman chip.

They should learn to leave a level of believability in the things people make up.

RE: They can read the future?
By Reclaimer77 on 9/20/2013 6:40:05 PM , Rating: 2
To be fair Jason, take Microsoft out of the picture and Nokia is in worst shape. They've been on life support from a super-wealthy benefactor. Ultimately now not even owning their phone division anymore.

But yes, Heins is clearly suffering from CCDS (congenital Canadian denial syndrome).

By YearOfTheDingo on 9/20/2013 11:20:59 PM , Rating: 2
The funny thing is that they changed the name of the company to that of their flagship product in hope somehow help turn it around. Instead, now any bad new about the company becomes anti-advertising for the brand.

By dgingerich on 9/20/2013 4:57:46 PM , Rating: 2
I have several ideas that could be the perfect comeback for Blackberry, but they'd never listen to me.

RE: Comeback!
By retrospooty on 9/20/2013 5:05:23 PM , Rating: 2
There is really only one thing they had to do... Make a phone that people want.

Simply put, a company that makes phones, 6 years after the iPhone released, still couldn't manage to make a phone that people want.

RE: Comeback!
By troysavary on 9/20/2013 5:51:35 PM , Rating: 2
It wasn't so much they didn't produce a desirable phone, they produced it 2 or 3 years too late. The Z10 is a nice device and BBOS10 is, in my opinion, far superior to Android. But BB waited too long and lost any momentum they once had. By time the Z10 finally came out, everyone had already written off BB. If they had released a QNX based handset around the same time they released the Playbook, I think things would be completely different. Speaking of the Playbook, there is a market BB pioneered. The 7 inch tablet. That, and the Kindle Fire, were there way before everyone else was doing it.

RE: Comeback!
By retrospooty on 9/20/2013 6:38:21 PM , Rating: 2
"It wasn't so much they didn't produce a desirable phone, they produced it 2 or 3 years too late. "

Ya, but "desirable" means people want it, and no-one does. The fact that no one wants it means its not desirable, regardless of how good it might be. They failed to make it good enough for anyone to notice or care, and they failed to market it as well, therefore its not desirable.

RE: Comeback!
By bplewis24 on 9/20/2013 5:55:50 PM , Rating: 2
The problem is, they needed to make a phone people wanted like 4 years ago. Even if they made the best phone on the market, bar none, and released it last week, they'd have NO CHANCE.

Android & iOS are way too entrenched, and there is really only room for one third place runner right now, which happens to be MS with WP8. And WP8 has the niche of being very different from iOS and Android (at least in UI terms), so RIM can't even compete with them.

Everything RIM does is a year late and a dollar short. Hell, they even released BBM (the last thing most tech-savvy people cared about from RIM) a full year or two after most people stopped caring.

RE: Comeback!
By ritualm on 9/20/2013 7:28:06 PM , Rating: 2
If BB is a defense contractor for the US government, it would have made millions in profits and not have to worry about being a distant fourth place in consumer mindshare. And since government contracts have very different requirements, being very very late to market would actually help them in the long run.

BB is dead phone
By KOOLTIME on 9/21/2013 6:52:42 PM , Rating: 2
good they keep trying to hold on to a dead phone, they should have sold is years ago when they had offers on the table, greedy fools, said no we are better, now look they are greedy fools with an outdated phone nobody wants, and no where to turn but to bankruptcy and be the end of this over priced junk of a phone.

RE: BB is dead phone
By Makaveli on 9/22/2013 7:38:50 PM , Rating: 2
when you actually use a BB10 device then someone can take your rant seriously.

good effort, but...
By w8gaming on 9/20/2013 11:18:41 PM , Rating: 2
Well it was a nice effort for BB to try, but against the big 3 - Apple/Google/Microsoft, the odds is just too much against them. Sometimes you could be a market leader for a long time and then a discruptive technology came along and threw everything you ever did into disarray. Even a refocusing on the traditional enterprise business is just going to buy some time before even that will go away. It is time for the company to start looking elsewhere. Can they build Android phone? Doubtful they can compete against the like of Samsung or Apple. But there are plenty of opportunity out there, a simple game such as GTA5 has managed to gross over 1 billion in sales in 3 days, which put the profitability of the game at the same level as The Avengers and Iron Man 3 when you consider the cost. For software developers there are always many avenue to make money.

By lexi222 on 9/23/2013 1:55:09 PM , Rating: 2
what Sandra responded I didnt even know that any one able to profit $8947 in one month on the computer. her latest blog ..........

"We basically took a look at this situation and said, this is bullshit." -- Newegg Chief Legal Officer Lee Cheng's take on patent troll Soverain

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