After months upon months of investor backlash, RIM’s making some significant changes. And by «significant,» we mean the co-chief executives (and founders) are out. As of tomorrow, both Jim Balsillie and Mike Lazaridis will be stepping away from the top posts, enabling «a little-known company insider» to take over, according to The Wall Street Journal. Purportedly, this is all part of «a board and management shuffle,» with COO Thorsten Heins to step into what many expect to be an impossible role to thrive in. The Globe and Mail asserts that he’ll be immediately seeking a Chief Marketing Officer to polish up the company’s severely damaged brand, and he «will not rule out licensing RIM’s new BlackBerry 10 operating system to other handset manufacturers.» In an interview with the outlet, he stated that he’ll be executing «flawlessly» and with vigor — not unexpected, but still, bold words.Startlingly, Heins also asserted that he’s «confident» in the existing lineup of BlackBerry handsets and the software update recently made available for the PlayBook; call us crazy, but he’d be wise to just spout out reality and make clear that RIM’s existing lineup is nowhere near competitive in the grand scheme of things. As for Mike and Jim? The former will become «vice-chair of the board with special duties to examine innovation,» with the latter becoming a traditional director. In an interesting move, outgoing co-CEO Lazaridis stated the following: «I think it’s that unwillingness to sacrifice our long-term value for short-term gain. That’s why we didn’t choose Android. That’s why we decided to build the future on QNX.» So wait, RIM had the chance to choose Android… and didn’t? No time like the present to reach back and shake things up, Mr. Thorsten.
RIM’s Jim Balsillie and Mike Lazaridis are out, new CEO Thorsten Heins to ponder licensing BlackBerry 10