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September 26, 2014

BlackBerry 2Q Report Surpasses Analysts’ Expectations

BlackBerry image — It was a packed house at the BlackBerry 10 product launch in January.

BlackBerry CEO John Chen is slowly digging BlackBerry out of the red.

The Canadian Smartphone company today reported a smaller fiscal second-quarter loss than predicted by Wall Street.

The Waterloo, Ont. firm posted a net loss of $207 million, or 39 cents per share — a vast improvement from the year-earlier loss of $965 million, or $1.84 per share.

Its revenue was a different story, however — it dipped 42 percent to $916 million. Investors had predicted $950 million.

EXECUTIVE PORTRAIT - John Chen, of the Walt Disney Board of Directors is now  CEO at BlackBerry.(DISNEY/BOB D'AMICO)

EXECUTIVE PORTRAIT – John Chen, of the Walt Disney Board of Directors is now CEO at BlackBerry.(DISNEY/BOB D’AMICO)

The company’s shares decreased two percent to $9.59 in pre-market trading, although the price has been up and down all morning.

CEO John Chen is optimistic about his company’s performance, saying it is well on its way to recovery after several very tough years.

“We delivered a solid quarter against our key operational metrics, and we are confident that we will achieve breakeven cash flow by the end of FY15,” Chen said. “Our workforce restructuring is now complete, and we are focusing on revenue growth with judicious investments to further our leadership position in enterprise mobility and security, driving us towards non-GAAP profitability during FY16.”

BlackBerry also reported 91 million monthly active BBM users, up from 85 million in the prior quarter while its EZ Pass Program has resulted in a total of 3.4 million licenses issued for BES10, a nearly three-fold increase from last quarter, with 25 percent of total licenses traded in from competitors’ Mobile Device Management platforms.

Chen, in May, said BlackBerry has an 80 percent chance of a successful recovery.

“I’m confident we will be able to save the patient,” he told Re/code.

Chen has reorganized the beleaguered firm since taking over last fall from fired CEO Thorsten Heins. He has put a new management team in place and has retuned the company to its core strengths of enterprise and security — abandoning the plan put in place by Heins to create snazzy touchscreen phones to compete with Apple’s iPhone and high-end Android options. He said BlackBerry, during the tenure of Heins, became distracted by trying to produce the best higher-end Smartphones.

“We cast our nets a little too broadly,” he said. “The bigger play is in enterprise.”

With the next line of phones, BlackBerry has stuck to what it knows: business. It’s Passport device, launched Wednesday, is a square device with a larger screen and a traditional full physical keyboard with all the of the popular messaging features.

Passport has proven popular thus far. The company sold out of its initial inventory in just two days.


Jennifer Cowan is the Managing Editor for SiteProNews.