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Amazon, MS and Nokia sniff around RIM

Many potential suitors as flagging firm attempts rebound

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Buyers including Amazon, Microsoft and Nokia have expressed some interest in hoovering up the remains of Research in Motion, as it reeled from one disaster to another this year.

But the Canadian firm is determined to sort itself out, people with knowledge of the situation told Reuters.

Etail giant Amazon hired an investment bank over the summer to look into a potential marriage with RIM, but it didn't make any formal proposals.

Meanwhile, RIM's board are still keen on letting co-chief execs and chairmen Mike Lazaridis and Jim Balsillie do their best to turn the business around and recoup some of its massive share losses.

Stocks in RIM have fallen 82 per cent from this year's high in February of $69.86 to a closing price yesterday of $12.52.

Last week, Lazaridis and Balsillie vowed to leave no stone unturned in their quest to rescue the BlackBerry and PlayBook maker, promising a comprehensive review of the firm.

They also said they were looking at "partnership and licensing opportunities", which may hint that they're interested in earning some money from their patent portfolio.

Although the board appears to be behind the two chiefs, some shareholders have suggested that it's time for RIM to sell itself, whether in bits and pieces or as a whole, and it's likely that the pros and cons of such a move are at least being considered at the top.

Other potential suitors reported for the ailing mobile firm are HTC and Samsung, and sources have whispered to The Wall Street Journal that Microsoft and Nokia considered making a joint bid.

All reports are saying that the current status of any talks between RIM and these companies is unclear. ®

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