It’s an uphill battle for RIM and Nokia
By Rick Emrith, Staff Writer
Reminiscing about the past can certainly be fun, but there comes a time when you have to start planning for the future. Research In Motion (RIM) and Nokia are similar in the fact that they both had a glorious past and are headed for an uncertain future. The companies are fighting in their efforts to move forward, and restore profitability and success.
Nokia is the company from Finland, and from 1998 – 2012 was the world’s largest mobile phone maker. Ever since the introduction of smartphones, Nokia has seen a steady decrease in market share. Research In Motion was once atop the smartphone market with their revolutionary BlackBerry line. RIM had a stock value consistently over the $100 mark in 2008; however, as of December 2012, their stock dropped between $9-12 until it finally reached a low point of $6.10 in that same year.
How bad have things been for these two companies? Nokia had recently sold their building headquarters in Finland for $222 Million and had to have it leased back to them on a long term commitment. Since February 2012 Nokia has laid off over 5000 employees, and more cuts may be on the way.
The companies are fighting in their efforts to move forward, and restore profitability and success.
Research In Motion has not fared much better: in July 2011, RIM cut 2000 jobs. October of 2011 RIM had one of the worst worldwide outages of services for their popular BBM messaging services. Research In Motion had co-founder and CEO Jim Balsillie stepped down in January 2012 as the company restructured its front office.
Nokia, in a strategic move has partnered with Microsoft to have the Windows phone operating system on their smartphones. Nokia has released their flagship device running the Windows OS – the Nokia Lumnia 920 – to generally positive reviews, though that has not translated into financial success. Analyst James Faucette said: “We estimate that the company is tracking toward shipping roughly 1 million new Windows 8 products in the December quarter, while it looks likely to sell through roughly half of those units, based on current run rates.”
Research In Motion has banked its company’s future on its new OS and lineup of BlackBerry 10 devices. With a release date set for January 30th 2012, it remains to be seen if it is enough to save the company. RIM opted to miss the 2012 Holiday shopping season to ensure that their new lineup of devices are fully ready upon release.
Nokia and RIM are two companies that helped revolutionize the mobile phone industry and are making the right moves to ensure they stay alive. Though competing with giants like Apple and Samsung seems like a daunting task, Nokia and RIM are both realistically competing for 3rd place. The battle to succeed may be a long one but don’t expect either company to go down without a fight.