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Shareholder demands RIM sell itself or spin off patents

'Seize the whip reins', cries banker

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A shareholder has told RIM it should consider selling itself or spinning off its patent portfolio.

The CEO of Jaguar Financial Group, who would not say how large Jaguar's RIM stake is, told the company it should act to shore up share prices. He said his proposal has the support of other shareholders who together hold less than 5 percent of RIM.

Vic Alboini, CEO of Jaguar – a Canadian Merchant bank – wrote in an open letter to all shareholders: “The status quo is not acceptable, the company cannot sit still. It is time for transformational change. The directors need to seize the reins to maximize shareholder value before more market value is lost.”

He goes on to slate RIM for failing to come up with features that "inspire consumer enthusiasm" and for taking too long to get new products to market. Alboini also cites a comScore report detailing Blackberry's recent slide from first to third place in the US smartphone market and its dipping market share from 39 per cent to 22 per cent in the 12 months ending 31 July 2011.

The letter is indicative of the financial pressures that the Canadian company is under.

It comes after confrontations at the RIM AGM in July, where CEOs faced complaints about poor share performance in comparison with Apple and Google. ®

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