BlackBerry Suffers Yet Another Setback; Managing Director Sacked

According to The Wall Street Journal, Richard Piasentin, the US managing director of BlackBerry, has been fired and a large number of layoffs, ahead of the US sales are being planned as well. BlackBerry last 10 devices — running the company’s revamped touch-centric OS designed to challenge iOS and Android — failed to help the company turn a profit in their first full quarter of availability, which has led to this sudden turn of events. Other factors include 5,000 layoffs over the past year, and not updating the PlayBook tablet to BB10 as promised. Also, the sales of BB10 devices have been so low, that Microsoft has publicly claimed that Windows Phone has declared the third most popular mobile platform, the position which previously belonged to BB.

The Wall Street Journal reports that BB, which right now has about 11,000 employees, has confirmed Piasentin’s departure, but refused to comment on the job cuts.

The BlackBerry CEO, Thorsten Heins told the unhappy shareholders, in an annual shareholders meeting on Tuesday, “While the US launch of BlackBerry 10 wasn’t a disaster, US carriers didn’t help matters by displaying ‘opportunistic thinking’ in promoting Apple’s iPhone and Samsung’s Galaxy handsets more than BB10 phones.

Despite its continued low sales, last year the US sales chief defended the company’s strategy, “I want to convey that fighting spirit that’s in BlackBerry. People don’t get it till it’s totally done — that’s why we’re making some very difficult decisions right now. We believe BlackBerry is at the beginning of a transition that will change the way people communicate.

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