You know those nightmares in movies when people dream of something so frightening it wakes them and they quickly sit up just to find it was only a dream?
That must be what RIM CEO Thorsten Heins is going through, but for him this nightmare is not just a dream, it’s real.
Today is RIM’s annual meeting.
Not only has RIM fallen off the track, losing business and shareholder value, but after recent comments investors are now asking whether CEO Heins understands the extent of RIM’s serious problems.
You would think so. After all he is the new CEO who is replacing the original CEO’s Mike Lazaridis and Jim Balsillie for this very reason.
You would hope so. RIM is a great company, with a great brand and great technology, but the wave has passed them by. They are like dear old grandpa. You still love him, but he is old and tired.
RIM no longer leads in the smart phone race. Today’s leaders are Google Android and Apple iPhone while RIM is far behind and losing ground every day.
Heins comments should be that he and other RIM executives get it.
They understand RIM has fallen off the fast track.
They understand they are on the downside of the growth wave.
They understand what they have to do next.
They understand they need to modernize the technology and the brand. In fact they realize that while they never had to worry about the brand in the past the brand is as important as the technology.
They understand they need to reinvent and modernize as quickly as possible.
They understand they need a modern web browser and loads of new Apps.
Instead what Heins has basically said lately is that RIM is not in trouble. It’s not in a “death spiral”. What! You mean all this worry and concern were for nothing?
Wouldn’t that be great. Wouldn’t it be great if we could wake up and this RIM nightmare would be just a dream.
I have watched RIM grow through the last couple decades. I have been a fan. They were making plenty of mistakes like not building a brand. Instead they let the brand build itself. They realize the problem with that way of doing things now that the company is struggling.
We need to hear how Heins and his executives understand the problem and are working to fix it and will once again grow to be great.
Unfortunately I don’t think they understand that.
We may be watching the unwinding of a great brand and that is very sad.
I hope not. I hope RIM once again get’s hot. But I have seen nothing to indicate that’s the direction they are heading.
RIM’s new Chief Marketing Officer Frank Boulben says this delay could be good. It will let RIM be the focus of the media after the Christmas frenzy.
Let’s hope he is right.
I think carriers will actually be very supportive of Blackberry 10 when it comes out, finally.
But first RIM has to make it through today’s annual meeting.
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Please attribute to Jeff Kagan, Tech Industry Analyst with www.jeffKAGAN.com
If you would like to discuss, call me at 770-579-5810 or send an email to jeff@JeffKAGAN.com
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Jeff KAGAN| Tech Industry Analyst www.jeffKAGAN.com
Analyst sharing perspective on the changing industry for 25 years
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