BlackBerry Q4FY2014 Results : BlackBerry Hardware Becoming Insignificant, Need A Platform Play

  • BlackBerry today announced its Q4FY2014 results and as expected they were not rosy
  • BlackBerry smartphone shipments dipped to an all-time low of 1.3 million units recognizing a revenue of roughly around US$360 million
  • However, BlackBerry realized a healthy sell-through of 3.4 million units during the three months with less than a third of which were the new BlackBerry 10 models
  • BlackBerry revenues have dipped below US$ 1 Billion for the first time in years
  • BlackBerry 10 in spite of being a beautiful modern swipe UI with solid enterprise and consumer features baked in is moving quickly towards extinction as overall ecosystem and traction remains weak
  • BlackBerry’s hardware revenues are now a partly third of the total BlackBerry revenues down from 83% in the same quarter at its peak in 2009
  • BlackBerry after an internal restructure three months ago under the new CEO John Chen is leading the transformation of BlackBerry towards more of a software services and a platform company leveraging core software assets
  • Another commendable thing about BlackBerry is it still has almost US$2.7 Billion cash on hand and taking proactive measures to reduce OPEX and not burn the cas to reinvest into high-growth business units and segments. e.g. from QNX to BBM
  • We think BlackBerry should continue to shift focus away from hardware and concentrate all resources and energy towards beefing up and broaden software and services across verticals (e.g. automotive, government, etc) using QNX, enterprise solutions expertise and consumers with BBM (m-commerce platform) leveraging BBM channels
  • BlackBerry at some point will have to license out its BlackBerry 10 platform to tier-1 OEMs to become more of a platform company as maintaining a platform and growing a developer ecosystem alone will burn resources quickly and wont allow BlackBerry to become leaner
Neil is a sought-after frequently-quoted Industry Analyst with a wide spectrum of rich multifunctional experience. He is a knowledgeable, adept, and accomplished strategist. In the last 18 years he has offered expert strategic advice that has been highly regarded across different industries especially in telecom. Prior to Counterpoint, Neil worked at Strategy Analytics as a Senior Analyst (Telecom). Neil also had an opportunity to work with Philips Electronics in multiple roles. He is also an IEEE Certified Wireless Professional with a Master of Science (Telecommunications & Business) from the University of Maryland, College Park, USA.

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