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Source: RIM begins laying off high-level staff (theglobeandmail.com)
37 points by protomyth on Mar 29, 2012 | hide | past | web | favorite | 21 comments

Mr. Heins (new RIM CEO) says "we are undertaking a comprehensive review of strategic opportunities including partnerships and joint ventures, licensing, and other ways to leverage RIM's assets and maximize value for our stakeholders."

Can you imagine Steve Jobs saying stuff like "maximize value for our shareholders"?

Steve was obsessed with providing a user experience that blew people's minds and designing products that changed the world. And he did, repeatedly.

RIM's leadership has no vision, and so there is no chance they will survive.

Interestingly, I bet there were people saying similar things about Steve Jobs when Apple was going down under and when he returned.

It's easy to hate on anyone by comparing them to someone phenomenally successful. But even Steve Jobs had his share of epic failures. And most certainly, doing things Steve Jobs style is not the only successful way to build a company as your post seems to imply.

My point is that focusing on "maximizing shareholder value" instead of innovation and customer experience is what got RIM in trouble in the first place. It seems no lessons have been learned.

"maximizing shareholder value" is the purpose of a public traded company, including Apple.

Jobs did it by out-innovating, out-marketing and other stuff. RIM CEO is trying to do it his way. (which may or may not be successful.)

That's code for "we're talking to other companies about what we have that we can sell them."

The best deal is to sell the enterprise integration bits to Microoft, or the whole company to anyone who wants it, if there is anyone.

I would buy it, if the price is low enough (less than or equal to the money I have in my account).

Yeah, it almost sounds like a fire sale.

If you look closer, your quote is 'stakeholders', not shareholders. The meaning is a bit different, but perhaps Steve still wouldn't have said it.

“It is very clear to me that substantial change is what RIM needs,” Mr. Heins said on the call with investors.

Compared to (just a few months ago):

"I don’t think that there is a drastic change needed."

Oh, RIM.

I believe he clarified later on that what he meant by no drastic change needed was that selling the company was not on the table. However, I think his position on that may have changed now anyway.

The crazy thing is, this is good news for RIM. If Heins really cleaned house with the execs and he replaces them with people that can see reality, that's probably the only chance for RIM to stay an independent company.

It's not clear that is what will happen. But at least now there's a chance.

Rick Mercer's bit on RIM: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xm0gqBjDmg8

Scarily like the Nortel situation, only consumer facing.

It seems like RIM needs to get worse (in order to shake off all their dead wood) in order to eventually get better, since their board clearly has no clue, no care for their fiduciary responsibility, etc. I wonder if that can happen, then BB 10 launch, saving them from doom, before Android, Windows Phone, or iOS win the enterprise market.

I'd be willing to bet on low-end Android or WP devices taking the non-corporate blackberry market away (BB were the cheapest smartphones in the third world), leaving just the corporate/security/managed devices market up for grabs. This still belongs to RIM but is fast moving to other devices.

Odd as it may seem, I fully expect iOS to take over Enterprise. They're already dominating as personal devices among the people who would be making those decisions, and I see it as an inevitability that they'll eventually be adopted officially.

I do, too. There are some lacking management tools, sadly, but have the best hardware right now.

In the Bring Your Own Devices world, you pretty much have to support iOS #1 and Android #2 (pretty much all Android users in corporate environments will take a free iPhone if that's cheaper for the company than also supporting Android; the reverse, no). I haven't seen anyone except tech companies actually buying iPhones at the IT level for distribution, but plenty of people given a corporate phone buying allowance will do so. And, IT departments DO buy iPads, so supporting iPhone + iPad is easy.

It is sad that Apple doesn't care about the enterprise market directly; even if they just had a closely-allied company like the old Claris to build the management tools, consulting, etc., it would make it a lot easier to use iOS and macs in corporate environments.

"pretty much all Android users in corporate environments will take a free iPhone if that's cheaper for the company than also supporting Android; the reverse, no"

I say this while fully acknowledging the obvious superiority of iOS devices with respect to touch responsiveness, app look and feel, etc. but I'd have to disagree. I would resist taking an iPhone over my corporate provided Android, it would feel almost impossibly crippling to go from what's effectively a fully functional portable computer to such a restrictive "consumer only" managed environment.

> It is sad that Apple doesn't care about the enterprise market directly;

Considering the group configuration tools they provide, I don't think that's an accurate statement.

Those tools are a nice start but not as good as BES or some third party tools.

This might be a good step, but we still haven't heard a plan from RIM on how they plan to adapt to the changing landscape. A shake up of upper management is good in principle, but it isn't an end to itself.

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