Update: BlackBerry says “we are moving a small number of US-focused sales roles that were based in Canada to the US”

Ian Hardy

September 10, 2013 7:24 am

BlackBerry has been on a roller coaster ride for the past couple years. In an attempt to gain back valuable market share they decided to completely revamp its operating system and create a ‘new mobile computing platform’ called BlackBerry 10. While CEO Thorsten Heins declared the best 1st day sales in its history back in February, interest in BlackBerry devices – Z10, Q10, Q5 – have remained flat and so have profits.

The last number of months have also been riddled with job cuts. The first round was 250 in July, then another 100 in August. At the time a company spokesperson stated that “we are in the second phase of our transformation plan… Our evolution as a company is ongoing and is in no way easy.” New reports today have suggested that BlackBerry has once again given termination letters to employees, this time to those in sales – both consumer and enterprise. There’s no specific number – WSJ says several dozen – and the the job cuts impacted those in Waterloo, United States and expected to hit the U.K. in the next few days. A BlackBerry rep stated “I can confirm a small number of employees were laid off today.”

BlackBerry is currently seeking a buyer, or possibly splitting the company up into parts. Apparently the company has narrowed its list of potential bidders and is aiming for a November sale.


Update: BlackBerry just sent us this statement the recent news:

we are moving a small number of US-focused sales roles that were based in Canada to the US

“I noticed that you referenced the Cantech Letter regarding BlackBerry’s salesforce and thought I’d clarify that we are moving a small number of US-focused sales roles that were based in Canada to the US to be more closely aligned with our customers. As previously stated, we are in the second phase of our transformation plan. As part of this transformation, BlackBerry will continually evaluate its organization – from top to bottom – to ensure we have the right people, with the right skills in the right locations to drive new opportunities in mobile computing.”


Source: CantechLetter
Via: WSJ

  • sicsicpuppy

    “We tried to reach BlackBerry for comment , but all we received in reply were resumes ”
    – Mobilesyrup-

    • jddd

      Lmao!

    • kroms

      LOL

  • Super_Deluxe

    Lol at this layoff rate they’ll have no employees left to give the boot. RIP BlackBerry!

    • HollyBolly

      I’d rather have a company that is watching their bottom line that carefully rather than one that is overloaded with employees or doesn’t even employee people in their own country, especially when times are rough. Some companies just want to avoid taxation and look like it’s innovative when really …it’s not.
      It’s not BlackBerry’s fault that bloggers / media blows everything out of proportion. They may sell the Hardware piece, but the software is not for sale…do your due dilligence before you post stupid things like that.
      Be a bit more considerate for the people that were let go. This isn’t just a stock…there are “people” that this affects…could be your job…give it some thought!
      JMHO

    • kroms

      LMFAO. So the PEOPLE ! are to blame for BB demise ? LMAO

      Ok , well hell. Why didn’t anyone think of that ?

      Dude. Take a shower , a cold one.

    • kroms

      ” It’s not BlackBerry’s fault that bloggers / media blows everything out of proportion.”
      Actually ? IT IS !

      It’s BB fault 100% that they are in the position they are in RIGHT now.
      BB No one else.

      Unless of course you think CEOs and board members sit at there Computers all day and read up on Blog sites instead of Golfing and talking about how much money they are making, or losing.

  • John878756

    Thorstein really wants his $55million payout – he NEEDS to sell the thing!

  • Max Fireman

    This is sad. Blackberry once was an empire. Hopefully those laid off can find a job somewhere soon.

    • kroms

      Sad is for losers. Like us normal people. CEO’s , Board members could care less about it being SAD ! Numbers ! Show us the Numbers ! Are we making Money ? or Not ?

      That’s what is important to them. Who cares about laid off workers.

      That is the reality of it all.

  • Skazzberry 2.0

    Everyone here called it months ago, including myself. Yet all you folks kept laughing at us with our RIP RIM posts. Well there you have it people.

    • Blocknards

      An acquisition or sale is not the same as bankruptcy. It’s not over, until it’s over.

  • J-Ro

    I heard they fired some of the sales team. Which to me makes sense, If sales are low, looks like someone didn’t go a good pitch. I imagine it is like the boiler room at BBRY right now.

    Employment is for closers!

  • JT

    How come nobody ever mentions that the real trouble with @Blackberry started in 2007 when Thorsten Heins got to RIM? They need to fire this guy!
    The problems with this company are not that complicated. They make good phones with bad software and had a loyal following of business users that they took for granted and ignored.

    Turnaround for this company is not hard:
    – Adopt android (or fix the massive UI issues with BB10)
    – focus on business users in marketing and development

    • Plazmic Flame

      I don’t think you realize how many business users rely on a BlackBerry. Switching to Android would be the sure fire way to run the company into the ground.

    • J-Ro

      All they really need to do at this point is focus on their enterprise clients and grow from there. The fire sale seems a bit extreme to me. Look at WP, they had a rough start but kept working and are now the #3. Blackberry lost it’s work ethic.

    • JT

      I do realize it, and I don’t like the idea of switching to Android but there we are heading to a similar problem that existed in the 70s with Betamax & VHS video systems.

      Like it or not apps drive mobile phone sales and few will develop apps for the blackberry because of dwindling market share.

      I am not a user of many apps myself but I do recognize the reality of the market.

    • J-Ro

      Lol your reference has nothing to do with the topic at hand. Betamax was more expensive than VHS. It didn’t lack in apps. All BBRY needs is time. Rome wasn’t built in a day.

    • Subliminal7X

      JT does have a point. As much as BB might need time, it also needs to sell phones. They are alienating their strongest markets by pricing themselves out of the fight !
      I spent over a year working in India and you’d be amazed at how many people use basic feature phones, including manager types. It’s a very price sensitive market and there’s a reason Nokia is doing well with the Asha phones there. Many people still use Blackberries especially Curves, and imagine I’ve asked managers in top hotels if they’d upgrade to BB10 and they say it’s too expensive ! Anytime I asked work colleagues there who had old BBs the same question, the answer was always the same. Blackberry needs to get serious in the emerging markets and start competing on spec as well as price, and as I said before, marketing needs work too.

    • J-Ro

      The marketing needs a lot of work. For those markets, they should be focusing heavily on the Q5. It is half the price of the Q10 but pretty much all the same benefits. It is the 2013 curve.

    • gomez

      well said, while i may need all those apps, the market had dictated that they are very important to the product success, android and apple rule in that category and that is why they are on top , blackberry failed to keep up with the times,

    • Subliminal7X

      Agreed.
      And I also agree with a couple of JT’s comments but not the adopt Android part. Android is not the salvation for some companies who adopted it, there is one company doing better than all others in that area.
      Blackberry 10 does not have massive UI issues… it has areas that need to be improved and really is quite good for a new OS. iOS didn’t even launch with cut & paste ! BB10 will improve as long as they listen to user suggestions and try to reduce the update fragmentation by carriers.
      Marketing needs serious work which probably explains the shakeup in US sales people. Horrible carrier ad support with products hidden in back areas (like I saw at a US T-Mobile store), friends of mine in the UK amazed at my Z10 and not even being aware that BB had such new phones, or if they were aware, were put off by BB’s ridiculous pricing.
      Blackberry needs a plan, and it should be to focus on enterprise, marketing, Good specced lower end phones with SENSIBLE pricing and possibly even a Playbook X !
      If they absolutely had to take a financial loss in phones, it would better to be in aggressive pricing and getting as many handsets into customers hands as possible to grow the likelihood of devs being interested in the platform, rather than trying to encourage people to leave the established platforms and pay a massive premium to do so.

  • Many

    There is no such thing as “time ” for tech company it’s now or never

  • kroms

    WOW So BB felt the need to clarify on this ? Anyways no matter, the reality is there are STILL people being let go regardless what they say.

    ” BlackBerry will continually evaluate its organization – from top to
    bottom – to ensure we have the right people, with the right skills in
    the right locations to drive new opportunities in mobile computing.”
    Translation, We don’t need people in Waterloo , they can be let go, we will have people here in the US that can take care of that stuff.

  • kroms

    Funny though ? Why are they moving ” we are moving a small number of US-focused sales roles that were based in Canada to the US” ?
    Could they not be doing the same thing here to begin with ? I mean why were they even here to begin with ?

  • kroms

    Also, All the people that did get Fired! or let go ……..I’ll wager anything that if , IF BB does continue and re-hire in the future it will be for far LESS then what those people were getting paid. I’m calling this one right now.