Blackberry to slash 4500 jobs amid heavy losses
Blackberry, the world-renowned smart-phone maker, has announced its plans to cut 4,500 jobs, or 40 per cent of its worldwide workforce, in an attempt to compensate for huge losses and heavy falls in sales.
The firm said it anticipated a loss of as much as $995 million when it reports its second-quarter earnings next week. Furthermore, sales in the firm closed down 17% after briefly being halted following the announcement.
In August, the Canadian company said it was evaluating a possible sale.
The company said the losses were primarily attributable to disappointing sales of its new Z10 model smart-phone. Released in January to much fanfare after many delays, the phone has failed to enthuse consumers.
In June, Blackberry's chief executive Thorstein Heins said that the company had shipped only 2.7 million Z10 phones out of 6.8 million. Many Blackberry users had instead opted to stick with earlier models.
In a statement on Friday Mr Heins, said: "We are implementing the difficult, but necessary operational changes announced today to address our position in a maturing and more competitive industry, and to drive the company toward profitability."
"Going forward, we plan to refocus our offering on our end-to-end solution of hardware, software and services for enterprises and the productive, professional end user."
Over the summer, word trickled out the company had hired a series of advisors to help it explore options.
Analysts have long indicated that Blackberry's trove of patents could be attractive to potential buyers, but none of the large technology companies have publicly indicated interest. They have also argued that the job cuts and losses today could dampen the enthusiasm of potential buyers and might indicate the company could not find any interested parties.
This week, the company released a new version of its handset, the Z30, which was praised by observers but was nonetheless overshadowed by Apple's launch of its new smartphone products