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"The RIMdenberg"  (Source: Jason Mick/DailyTech LLC)
RIM is refilling its executive ranks as top talent looks for positions at more successful firms

Times are pretty desperate at Canadian phonemaker Research in Motion, Ltd. (TSE:RIM).  Customers are abandoning its soon to be defunct BlackBerry 7 lineup in favor of sleek Android handsets or Apple, Inc. (AAPL) iPhones.  RIM is counting on a new, richer operating system -- BlackBerry 10 -- and a selection of new high-end handsets to change its fortunes.  But with cash running out, the company's future is anything but certain.

Thus it's not surprising that much of the top talent at RIM wants out.  With RIM scraping from the bottom of the executive talent barrel (such as the recently hired chief marketing officer, a castoff of bankrupt LTE telecom LightSquared), the company is also facing many of its top talents jumping ship.

Patrick Spence, former managing director for Europe, the Middle East, and Africa was just recently appointed to head RIM's global sales efforts and was showing strong success in regions such as Indonesia.

Now the 14-year, London-based veteran and one of RIM's few rising talents has done the expected, announcing that he's jumping ship to a position in "another industry".

Patrick Spence
Patrick Spence was a very talented RIM executive.  He decided that his level of talent was a bit out place at RIM. [Image Source: RIM Vietnam Forums]

While some of RIM's recent departures have been involuntary -- such as co-CEOs Jim Balsillie and Mike Lazaridis who were outed in the board's revival bid for the company -- many are simply talented executives who don't want to be part of what increasingly looks like a failing firm.

The list of recent departures is long and includes chief operating officer, Jim Rowan; head of software David Yach; senior vice president for the BlackBerry platform, Alan Brenner; vice president for the BlackBerry Messenger instant messaging product, Alistair Mitchell; and chief marketing officer, Keith Pardy.

As the executive ranks deterioriate, RIM's failing finances have necessitated cuts from the general ranks as well.  In July RIM trimmed 2,000 jobs, or about 11 percent of its global workforce.  Much of its marketing and developer relations teams were put out of a job.

With unsold handsets and a ragtag crew of replacements to RIM's former executive talent piling up, one has to wonder if there's any hope for RIM, even with the very promising BB10 on the way.  Most analysts have expressed much skepticism that RIM will be able to maintain independence, opining that it's headed for a sale or break-up.

RIM shares are currently trading at about a quarter of their value from a year ago.


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If he is so great....
By zlandar on 5/24/2012 12:18:12 PM , Rating: 4
Then why is RIM getting clobbered in the first place?




RE: If he is so great....
By leviathan05 on 5/24/2012 1:04:37 PM , Rating: 4
Exactly. Talented executives don't have to jump ship because they don't run their ship into an iceberg, stand idly by for 3 years, then realize it's sinking and have to find a life raft.


RE: If he is so great....
By retrospooty on 5/24/2012 1:22:05 PM , Rating: 2
"Then why is RIM getting clobbered in the first place?"

It's possible he is really good, but wasnt getting any traction due to the wonderful idiots above him that ran things into the ground. Lazardis and Balsilie were the issue.


RE: If he is so great....
By Pirks on 5/24/12, Rating: 0
RE: If he is so great....
By retrospooty on 5/24/2012 1:55:35 PM , Rating: 2
"They were the issue, ok... so after they were kicked from the board, this guy decided to leave... because there were no more issues after these two losers were kicked. Did I get your logic right, retro?"

No, you didnt. You and logic never go together well. The post above said "if he is so great.... Then why is RIM getting clobbered in the first place?" I commented back and al I was saying is that the guy may have been good, we don't really know... Just because RIM failed doesn't mean every single exec there was bad. Certainly the CEO's were in denial and acted way too late.


"A politician stumbles over himself... Then they pick it out. They edit it. He runs the clip, and then he makes a funny face, and the whole audience has a Pavlovian response." -- Joe Scarborough on John Stewart over Jim Cramer














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