RIM may spin off or sell off handset division

John Moe Jun 25, 2012

Hi, it’s me, John Moe. You know, this memo is written by Marc Sanchez and me. In the internal version we don’t have bylines per item but in some cases it’s pretty obvious who’s writing what. If it’s a story about someone doing something amazing with music and beats, it’s almost always Marc. If it has to do with impressing upon you the importance of patent litigation or a documentation of the gradual collapse of Research In Motion, makers of BlackBerry, then you’re in Moetown.
According to a new report in The Sunday Times, RIM is considering splitting the company and selling off its handset division, the BlackBerry part, and focusing on messaging systems instead. The Times article is thickly paywalled but here’s what the Register says:

The Sunday Times doesn’t list any sources for its conjecture, but confidentially claims the plan is being considered with Amazon and Facebook being listed as potential buyers of the hardware business while RIM would hang on to the crown jewels in the form of BlackBerry Messenger and the cross-platform device management suite BlackBerry Fusion.
It’s an interesting idea, and one which will certainly have crossed the minds of JP Morgan and RBC Capital who were appointed last month to take a careful look at RIM with a view to refining the business plan.

I find it more than a bit kooky that Amazon or Facebook would be eager to sink a big investment into a platform with such dwindling prospects. But the Emergency Yard Sale aspect of RIM makes more than a little sense.

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