RIM’s expecting more tough times after revenue fall and losses

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Manufacturer loses one million customers in Q3 as it admits the timing of the BlackBerry 10 launch could also impact results for this current three month period

BlackBerry maker Research In Motion (RIM) has said it expects the timing of its BlackBerry 10 launch event on January 30 to impact results for the current quarter.

The statement comes after RIM reported its Q3 financial results for the three month period ending December 1, 2013, which saw it lose customers and report a revenue fall and losses of over $100 million.

RIM’s base fell to 79 million customers, down from 80 million subscribers in the previous quarter. It shipped around 6.9 million smartphones and some 255,000 PlayBook tablets.

Revenue was $2.7 billion (£1.7 billion), down five per cent from $2.9 billion (£1.8 billion) in the previous three and down 47 per cent year-on-year. Net loss for the quarter was $114 million (£70 million) with net income standing at $14 million (£8.6 million).

Cash flow from operations in the quarter was approximately $950 million (£583 million), with cash increasing from around $600 million (£368 million) to $2.9 billion (£1.8 billion).

RIM said it expects there to be continued pressure on operating results as it prepares for the launch of its BlackBerry 10 platform this quarter.

It will continue to consider using pricing initiatives on BlackBerry 7 devices and service fees in some markets as a way to maintain its customer base and drive more BlackBerry users.

However RIM said the timing of the BlackBerry 10 launch event on January 30 could impact sales of current BlackBerry 7 products as some customers may defer purchasing decisions and wait for BlackBerry 10 devices.

All these factors are expected to impact unit volumes, subscribers, margins and service fees, with an operating loss in the coming three month period expected, it added.

RIM president and CEO Thorsten Heins (pictured) said:“RIM continued to execute on its product roadmap plans and to deliver on key financial metrics as it gets set for the global launch of BlackBerry 10.

“More than 150 carriers are currently completing technical acceptance programs for the first BlackBerry 10 products, and beta trials of BlackBerry Enterprise Service 10 are underway at more than 120 enterprises including 64 Fortune 500 companies.

“This is an exciting time and our carrier partners, application developers and employees are all looking forward to unveiling the innovation and excitement of BlackBerry 10 to our customers on January 30, 2013.”

RIM CIO Robin Bienfait has also retired after six years at the manufacturer. In the past year, bienfait has led the company’s Enterprise business unit, focused on enabling services for enterprise customers and preparing for the launch of BlackBerry 10.

Heins added: “Robin has been an outstanding CIO and has built a world class organisation. Her team has diligently prepared us for the launch of BlackBerry 10 and beyond, and I will remain deeply grateful for her leadership and commitment,”

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