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BlackBerry recently announced plans to lay off an undisclosed number of employees in its device business, the arm responsible for developing smartphone software and applications. The cuts are part of the company’s overall goal to reignite growth by boosting sales of mobile management and security software, both of which are higher margin product categories.
Just last month, BlackBerry said it was considering closing its offices in Sweden which would eliminate roughly 100 jobs. When probed by The Wall Street Journal, a spokesperson declined to confirm if the offices have indeed been shut down or if they were part of this latest round of cuts.
The new cuts are expected to impact the company’s operations globally.
BlackBerry was once the market leader in terms of smartphones, especially those for enterprise clients. When the iPhone debuted in 2007, BlackBerry executives were taken back by some of its features and abilities but believed its shortcomings meant it wouldn’t be a threat to their core business.
Underestimating Apple as well as Google’s Android platform proved to be a fatal mistake.
BlackBerry replaced former chief Thorsten Heins in late 2013 but by that time, the damage had long been done. Current CEO John Chen is still working to turn the company around but as you can imagine, it won’t be easy. The company reported a 32 percent drop in revenue during its fiscal fourth quarter.
Photo via Bloomberg News