BlackBerry came out with a couple solid pieces of news today with the announcement of the 5-inch Z30 and a release date for BBM for Android and iPhone. However, lurking behind this all is a dark shadow of possible thousands of job cuts.
According to a report in the Wall Street Journal, ‘people familiar with the matter’ have Waterloo-based BlackBerry preparing to slash upward of 40% of its employees – that’s about 5,000 jobs – and will happen ‘in waves’ across all departments. BlackBerry declined to comment on the specific number, only that “Organizational moves will continue to occur to ensure we have the right people in the right roles to drive new opportunities in mobile computing.”
BlackBerry axed 5,000 employees last year, plus recently cut 250 in July, then another 100 in August. Repeatedly they’ve stated “we are in the second phase of our transformation plan… Our evolution as a company is ongoing and is in no way easy.”
Perhaps this is one step that is needed for a possible November sale, or being split into several parts (OS and patents). BlackBerry recently announced plans to “explore strategic alternatives” that could lead towards a “possible joint ventures, strategic partnerships or alliances, a sale of the Company or other possible transactions.”