Original URL: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2013/05/22/htc_exodus_bad_news/

HTC woes prompts 'leave now' tweet from former staffer

Chief product officer latest to bail from sinking mobe-maker

By Phil Muncaster

Posted in Phones, 22nd May 2013 06:38 GMT

Life just got even harder for struggling Taiwanese mobe-maker HTC, with chief product officer Kouji Kodera walking out the door and another former staffer posting nasties to Twitter.

Kodera, who held a similar position at previous employer Sony Ericsson, joins recent departees VP of global comms Jason Gordon, global retail marketing manager Rebecca Rowland, director of digital marketing John Starkweather, and product strategy manager Eric Lin.

The latter left no'one in doubt about his feelings for his previous employer by leaving the Tweet below as his legacy.

Kodera's departure will be a particularly big blow given HTC's ambition to refresh its products and climb smartphone sales charts once again.

Although the flagship HTC One got great reviews when it launched recently, it hasn’t been enough so far to help arrest a disastrous slump in sales.

Sales plummeted nearly 37 per cent in Q1 2013 to NT$42.8bn (£930m), with the firm making just NT$85m (£1.85m) of profit on that - representing a 98 per cent drop.

HTC blamed delays of the flagship handset in certain markets as well as its on-going problem of low brand awareness for the poor performance.

The firm does appear to be doing decently well in China, where shipments jumped significantly last year, although competition is strong there as everywhere, especially at the budget end of the market.

One bright spot for the firm – despite being forced to exit the South Korean market last year in a bid to “streamline operations”, it does appear to have a powerful ally after North Korean despot Kim Jong-un was snapped using what appeared to be one of its Desire handsets. ®