BlackBerry suffered humiliation this weekend as it announced huge losses along with heavy staff redundancies as it looks to once again refocus its strategy.
The firm revealed its quarterly earnings on Friday, a week earlier than anticipated. In the second quarter of the 2013 financial year, BlackBerry posted losses between $950m and $995m. BlackBerry and its investors can take some heart in the fact that the firm has no debt, however.
As had been strongly rumoured last week, 4,500 BlackBerry employees are expected to lose their jobs, which equates to roughly 40 percent of the firm's global workforce.
The company sold an estimated 5.9 million phones in the quarter, and has been forced to cut its smartphone roster from six to four handsets.
BlackBerry blamed its Z10 smartphone for a $930-960m non-cash, pre-tax charge against inventory and supply commitments.The firm said it would "re-tier the BlackBerry Z10 smartphone to make it available to a broader, entry-level audience" as its new Z30 handset would take the reins as the company's high-end device.
BlackBerry CEO Thorsten Heins said the job cuts and restructuring were part of a wider strategy shift back to the firm's roots, with enterprise and prosumer customers taking priority. "We are implementing the difficult, but necessary operational changes announced today to address our position in a maturing and more competitive industry, and to drive the company toward profitability," he said.
"Going forward, we plan to refocus our offering on our end-to-end solution of hardware, software and services for enterprises and the productive, professional end user. This puts us squarely on target with the customers that helped build BlackBerry into the leading brand today for enterprise security, manageability and reliability," he concluded.
BlackBerry says it had seen an increase in the penetration of its Enterprise Service (BES) 10 product, with an extra 6,000 commercial and test servers installed in the past two months, bringing the total to 25,000.
BlackBerry had to delay the release of its once-popular BBM instant-messaging platform to Android and iOS following early leaks of the software. Thorsten Heins will be speaking to investors on Friday as planned, where he will discuss in further detail his company's strategy and potential buyouts.
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