Feeds

Top RIM jobs shake-up: Heads roll... but not very far

Heins spills beans on BlackBerry rescue plan

Boost IT visibility and business value

Comment Jim Balsillie and Mike Lazaridis have stepped down as co-CEOs at RIM, but sacrificial lambs have to be sacrificed, not kept knocking around while things continue as usual.

Lazaridis hangs on as vice-chairmain, and gets control of a new "Innovation Committee" within the company, while Balsillie will have to content himself with a board position, but what's most remarkable about their replacement – former COO Thorsten Heins – is that he firmly believes the only thing preventing RIM's success is that people don't know how great it is.

RIM had to sacrifice someone, sales are down and shareholders are calling for change, but while the company has a new head, the thoughts inside it look very similar to those it has replaced, and anyone expecting a change of direction will be sadly disappointed.

That may be, in part, because Heins was chosen by those he succeeded, but speaking to reporters he repeatedly emphasised the great decisions made by those he was replacing, to the point where one might wonder why they were being replaced at all.

So his predecessors are "visionaries" who "pioneered the smartphone industry" and "took a bold step" in buying QNX which (it turns out) was "the right path to go [down]". There were "bumps on the road", but "we are strong today because of what we've been though". Plans for the future are limited to "continu[ing] to develop customer-focused products" and "make sure employees have the tools available to help them succeed".

There was much more along those lines, platitudes delivered in scripted monotone. When asked directly what he was going to do to turn the company around, Heins claimed the company didn't need turning around, only greater "market communications" – and even that was just for the USA.

The only point on which Heins was adamant, and showed any trace of emotion, was scotching any talk of selling off parts of the business and breaking up RIM. He was "prepared to entertain" licensing BlackBerry 10, but given that it's not even out yet it's hard to imagine who would be interested in taking a licence.

RIM has beheaded its board to show shareholders that it can change, only it hasn't changed and is still betting everything on BlackBerry 10 (the new platform based on QNX), which will arrive on the PlayBook next month. The face at the top might be different but the company remains unchanged. ®

The Power of One Brief: Top reasons to choose HP BladeSystem

More from The Register

next story
BBC goes offline in MASSIVE COCKUP: Stephen Fry partly muzzled
Auntie tight-lipped as major outage rolls on
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
Stick a 4K in them: Super high-res TVs are DONE
4,000 pixels is niche now... Don't say we didn't warn you
Sonos AXES support for Apple's iOS4 and 5
Want to use your iThing? You can't - it's too old
Philip K Dick 'Nazi alternate reality' story to be made into TV series
Amazon Studios, Ridley Scott firm to produce The Man in the High Castle
There's NOTHING on TV in Europe – American video DOMINATES
Even France's mega subsidies don't stop US content onslaught
You! Pirate! Stop pirating, or we shall admonish you politely. Repeatedly, if necessary
And we shall go about telling people you smell. No, not really
Too many IT conferences to cover? MICROSOFT to the RESCUE!
Yet more word of cuts emerges from Redmond
Joe Average isn't worth $10 a year to Mark Zuckerberg
The Social Network deflates the PC resurgence with mobile-only usage prediction
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable
Learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.