Guest Post: Thorsten Heins takes RIM by the Reigns as new CEO

Technology journalist, Alysa Jeff, takes you back over the BlackBerry maker’s recent history

Mike Lazaridis, who founded the firm back in 1984, served as the CEO of BlackBerry maker, Research in Motion (RIM), until very recently with the co-chief, Jim Balsillie. The two were heading the firm; however, as of now both Lazaridis and Balsillie have quit, and forwarded Thorsten Heins to take charge of their position as the firm’s chief. Prior to the departure of Lazaridis and Balsillie, RIM was experiencing some turbulence as it faced some serious competition. The maker of the BlackBerry recently underwent a phase where it was unable to provide even its services.Heins is not new and previously had served as the COO at RIM. As the co-CEOs have stepped down, Heins has been appointed to fill in the position.

Later, in a statement RIM said that setting Heins as the new CEO and President was a part of a progression plan forwarded to the board by the former chiefs.

Lazaridis and Balsillie also no longer hold the position of co-chairmen. To fill in their place, a director – Barbara Stymiest – has been appointed as the new chairwoman.

Balsillie has decided to move away from the chairman position completely and remain only on the board of directors for the firm whereas Lazaridis will now transfer to become Vice Chairman.

Although he maybe not the chairman of RIM anymore, Lazaridis will still be the chairperson in a new committee that he has founded namely the ‘Innovation Committee’.

After this change, RIM tells us that Lazaridis will be working alongside Thorsten Heins, the new chief and providing him with strategic information.

This should ensure a smooth transition for the firm whilst globally promoting the BlackBerry brand worldwide.

Heins joined RIM back in December of 2007 in the position of senior vice president for hardware engineering. Heins quit the Siemens Communications Group to come to work with RIM.

Investors had been pushing Lazaridis and Balsillie to retire from the CEO position for a while. Last year [in August 2011], Heins was promoted as the COO for product sales.

Now, as the new CEO of the firm, Heins has not expressed any need for a change of direction by the gradually fading Canadian firm.

Despite the fact that in both its smartphone and tablet business RIM is facing some very serious challenges.

RIM is trying to hold its ground in a market against competitors such as the iPhone and iPad from Apple and other devices which are making use of the Android operating system.

To tackle a situation of this kind, RIM is making some changes to the firm and its products. For example, its purchase of QNX Software Systems.

QNX systems’ operating system is set to be the foundation for BBX. That is the new platform on which the next generation of RIM tablets and smartphones will operate.

The product and sales team at RIM will also be joined by a new Chief Marketing Officer, and both will be working closely to deliver better performance.

In the third quarter of 2011 BlackBerry’s share fell to 2.9 per cent from 3 per cent a year earlier. Overall, the BlackBerry operating system had an 11 per cent share of smartphone operating systems down from 15 per cent a year earlier, according to research firm Gartner.
In October 2011, users in the EMEIA (Europe, Middle East, India and Africa) region, together with those in North America and Latin America experienced a serious service outage. That certainly took a toll on the company’s image and despite their best efforts to console customers with free apps that amounted to more than $100, not much progress was made.

For the quarter ending November 26th 2011, the company’s revenue was $5.2 billion, 6 per cent less than the same quarter the previous year. That made a net profit of $265 million, down 71 per cent from the previous year.

Author Bio

Alysa Jeff is technology loving girl who writes for Blackberry Monitoring – designed to disseminate information to people regarding all the innovations in the field of technology. She loves communicating with people regarding all the latest updates in gadget and app world. She also likes to tell them about the features and advantages of apps like Track Blackberry. See the full article on this BlackBerry Parental Control app here.

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