Remember BlackBerry? I think they used to sell phones. Apparently the company still exists, and is looking to sell itself, or "explore strategic alternatives," at least. But it's emerged that an angel investor put together a rescue plan and a "dream-team," more than a year ago, but what-was-then-RIM wouldn't give him the time of day.
In IT Blogwatch, bloggers explore alternative strategies.
Your humble blogwatcher curated these bloggy bits for your entertainment.
Mikael Ricknäs repörts: [Ýöü'řë fïřëđ -Ëđ.]
BlackBerry's board of directors has formed a committee to explore strategic alternatives...as it struggles to turn its new BlackBerry 10 operating system into a success. [It] recorded an $84 million loss during the three months to June 1. ... BlackBerry's worldwide smartphone market share was 2.9 percent...compared to 4.9 percent [a year earlier].
The so-called Special Committee of the board is comprised of Heins, Barbara Stymiest, Richard Lynch and Bert Nordberg...headed by Timothy Dattels. MORE
Angel Investor Robin Chan bemoans the lost opportunity:
Over a year ago, I helped form a secret product and engineering team...that was keenly interested in taking over the company. We wanted to move the company and its passionate customers to...Android. We saw a troubled company that could be saved.
[Today] the strategy of an enterprise grade Android company is still sound, but it just might be too late. MORE
And Adi Robertson explored Chan's pitch deck:
With BlackBerry now officially exploring a sale, Chan’s plan offers a glimpse of...a purely business-focused company with...no reason to hire Alicia Keys as a creative director. ... The group reached out to RIM’s board of directors, hoping to get enough momentum to buy out the company [but] failed to raise enough funds.
His plan would have jettisoned [BB10] in favor of an Android fork, optimized for security and enterprise with a few BlackBerry 10 features thrown in.
While Chan was pitching his takeover proposal, Thorsten Heins was categorically denying that RIM was in trouble. ... It's only now...that BlackBerry has officially acknowledged the "strategic alternative" of selling itself off. MORE
So Matt Rosoff reminds us what the world looked like back then:
[The company] had the enterprise software talent, penetration...of the Fortune 500, industry leading encryption, and...security. So, Chan suggested...should focus on its enterprise middleware and messaging platform, and create Android devices that fit into that plan.
Meanwhile, Samsung seems to be moving into the secure-Android breach with products like SAFE and KNOX. ... It's no sure thing that this plan would have saved BlackBerry, but now it's probably too late. MORE
But Brandon Russell reckons hindsight is 20/20:
But this is a “woulda, coulda, shoulda” situation that will in all likelihood never happen—we’ll never know what [that] version of Android is like. But that doesn’t mean BlackBerry isn’t interested in selling, which could lead to all kinds of possibilities. MORE
Meanwhile, Preston Gralla thinks the unthinkable and trolls the untrollable:
One of the best ways for Microsoft to jump-start its lagging mobile business is to buy struggling BlackBerry. ... It's a perfect match. ...instant market share...engineers...patents. ... It would give Microsoft a leg up on the smartcar future.
It's clear that by itself, BlackBerry has no future. So the company can likely be bought at a bargain price. ... BlackBerry would be a very good mobile investment at a reasonable cost. MORE