Responding to pressure from investors, Research In Motion’s joint chief executives Mike Lazaridis and Jim Balsillie have resigned.
Former chief operating officer Thorsten Heins takes over the top job at the struggling BlackBerry maker. In a conference call on Monday, Heins said he would focus on a consumer push and a smooth delivery of its products, rather than allowing a churn of innovation to disrupt rollout, as in the past.
“We innovated while we were developing the product and that needs to stop,” Heins said. “We need to innovate, don’t get me wrong, but … when we say a product is defined and a product is a product, execution has to be really, really precise.”
Still, he hinted he would stick to the current strategy, saying the company needed scaling up, not a dramatic transformation.
Lazaridis and Balsillie stressed this is an orderly transition in a long-agreed succession plan, not a retreat in the face of a plummeting share price, shrinking market share and criticism of its products, but takeover talk continues to swirl around RIM .
Heins is a former Siemens executive who has risen steadily through RIM’s upper management ranks since joining the Canadian company in late 2007.
Activist investors have clamoured in recent months for a new, “transformational” leader who could revitalise RIM’s product line and resuscitate its once cutting-edge image, but the market obviously did not see Heins as that and the company’s shares fell over five percent when trading started on Monday.
Lazaridis and Balsillie also gave up their shared role as chairman of RIM’s board. Barbara Stymiest, an independent board member who once headed the Toronto Stock Exchange, will take over in that capacity.
The pair had together built Lazaridis’ 1985 start-up into a global business with 15 billion euros in sales last year.
In recent years, they have weathered a storm of criticism as Apple’s iPhone and a slew of devices powered by Google’s Android operating system hit sales of their email-focused BlackBerry.
“There comes a time in the growth of every successful company when the founders recognize the need to pass the baton to new leadership. Jim and I went to the board and told them that we thought that time was now,” Lazaridis said.
- 1euronews live TV - News | euronews : the latest international news as video on demand
- 2Greek debt crisis is “absolute supremacy of capital over humans”
- 3Seven reasons why Yanis Varoufakis is now a political legend
- 4[Live updates] NGO flotilla bids to break Israeli blockade of Gaza
- 5[LIVE UPDATES] Greek debt deadline looms
- 6Large Hadron Collider ready to embark on an unprecedented voyage of discovery
- 7Istanbul Gay pride quashed by riot police, rubber bullets and water cannon
- 8[LIVE UPDATES] France: man decapitated, several wounded in chemical plant attack
- 9Israel prepares to repel boarders as ‘Freedom Flotilla 3’ tries to run Gaza blockade
- 10Greek debt summit – Live updates
- 11‘Distractingly sexy’ scientists hit back in lab chemistry polemic
- 12Greece votes ‘No’ in overwhelming rejection of bailout proposals
- 13NewsWires : euronews : the latest international news as video on demand
- 14Greek debt: who will pay if Greece fails?
- 15Summit up in Brussels as Greek proposals give food for thought and rumours fly
- 16Battle of Waterloo, live-tweeting 200 years on
- 17Greek PM faces day of crucial bailout talks in Brussels
- 18Citizens take power in Spain’s largest cities as a political revolution sweeps the country
- 19Italy discovers biggest illegal waste dump in Europe
- 20Hungary: billboard war sparks international concern
Airbus doubles up on Chinese factory operations
Blackberry posts first quarter loss as company continues revival
7 things we found out at the Paris Air Show 2015
Sukhoi Superjet 100 counts on comfort to expand its narrow-body activity
Airbus beats Boeing in sales battle at Paris Air Show
Wires > Business
- 05:19 CET China stocks tumble as regulator warns of ‘panic’
- 04:19 CET Deflation on UK high streets eases in June – BRC
- 02:36 CET Exclusive – JPMorgan to pay over $125 million to settle …
- 01:41 CET Sports betting firm GVC offers to buy Bwin.Party – FT
- 01:28 CET Symantec in talks to sell Veritas storage unit to Carlyle – source
- 01:09 CET Pace of UK hiring slows further in June – REC recruiters group
- 19:31 CET Former trader Hayes wanted to do a perfect job, Libor trial hears
- 18:28 CET Setback for Marks & Spencer as clothing sales dip