The already struggling company has taken a massive hit and has just announced that it is forced to slash 4,500 jobs.
Following last week’s announcement of the launch of new gadgets, and adding its BBM messenger service to the Apple App Store and Google Play for Android, BlackBerry has now also revealed that it is slashing 4,500 jobs from its workforce, writing off unsold phones worth over $900 million, and leaving certain sectors of the consumer wireless market.
These are the company’s latest moves in a scramble to rescue itself from a virtual freefall.
The company, based in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada, has explained that the writedown will cause it to experience a loss of almost $1 billion within its second quarter, which closed on August 31. It stated that the change in its gadgets inventory is greatly connected to the Z10 touchscreen smartphone that it originally unveiled in January in a greatly hyped New York City Event.
Unfortunately, the sales of those gadgets were nowhere near the level of the hype ahead of their launch.
In response to the very low sales of the Z10 gadgets, BlackBerry has said that its revenue from smartphone sales would be under $800 million within the last completed quarter. This isn’t even half of the sales that they saw at the same time in 2012, which were approximately $1.7 billion. The announcement of this news sent shockwaves through its stock, which dropped by a massive 16 percent immediately afterward. That day, its stock closed in Toronto at $9.08 CAD (approximately $8.82 USD).
These dramatic measures that have been taken by BlackBerry, in terms of its gadgets, layoffs, and consumer market refocus, are only the latest reflection of the uncertainty of the company’s future. Over the summer, the business announced that it had hired legal advisers and investment bankers in order to explore some potential strategic options. These include a possible sale of the company. This process is still underway.
This latest wave of job cutbacks resulting from the detrimental gadgets sales figures represent a slashing away of 40 percent of the workforce at BlackBerry. This is certain to be a painful blow to the Waterloo region, which has already been sent reeling from regular and deep job cutbacks from that same company.