Blackberry shares are suspended and to cut 40% of its worldwide workforce

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The Canadian flag flies in front of the Research In Motion (RIM) company logo on one of their buildings in Waterloo, Ont., on June 29, 2012

Blackberry announced on Friday that it would cut 4,500 jobs, or 40% of its worldwide workforce.

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It also said it anticipated a loss of as much as $995m (£621.1m) when it reports its second-quarter earnings next week.

Shares plummeted 20% after briefly being halted following the announcement.

In August, the troubled smartphone maker said it was evaluating a possible sale of the company.

“The company has sailed off a cliff. What do you expect when you announce you’re up for sale?” said BGC technology analyst Colin Gillis.

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“Who wants to commit to a platform that could possibly be shut down?”

The company has been seeking a path forward after its much-touted new phone and operating system failed to catch on.

This week, it released a new version of its handset, the Z30, which was praised by observers but was nonetheless overshadowed by Apple’s launch of its new smartphone products.

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