Research in Motion (RIM) is still struggling in the fierce mobile market. Speculations about a possible buyout of RIM and its products have been around for quite some time. Now, according to sources, RIM is planning to sell cloud services provider NewBay and some of the other minor assets it recently acquired, as part of a strategic review process. RIM acquired NewBay, a provider of photo, video, and social-networking tools for smartphones and computers, in October 2011 for around $100 million. It did so as a part of a new strategy to help it bounce back into the market.
RIM to sell Newbay
RIM had acquired NewBay in Dublin, Ireland, a huge part of the former RIM leadership's plan to alter its course and boost service revenue by having carriers use its services for messaging, content delivery and analytics on all smartphones. In late 2011, when RIM bought NewBay, it had more than 80 million subscribers. NewBay is capable of storing media on its own servers. It can deliver the stored data to any Internet-connected device such as mobile phones, personal computers and tablets. Now, RIM’s new CEO Thorsten Heins is working at a strategic review process, and is looking forward to offering a line-up of devices that will run on RIM's new BB10 operating system, possibly in the first-quarter of 2013. The news of the company selling the assets is reportedly a part of this review process by the new CEO. However, RIM has declined to comment on it.
Heins had recently said in an interview with the Telegraph that BlackBerry doesn’t have the resources to compete with some of the major smartphone manufacturers in terms of the sheer number of handsets produced each year. So the company might need to look at some other business models. “We have to differentiate and have a focused platform,” said Heins. “To deliver BB10 we may need to look at licensing it to someone who can do this at a way better cost proposition than I can do it”, he added. The BlackBerry 10 OS is set to offer what Heins refers to as a “true multitasking experience”, that enables users to run a number of systems at the same time. He is confident that the new version of the OS will be a success. “I think a lot of people are going to be surprised,” he said.
RIM has been struggling with its line-up of BlackBerry smartphones, which has been facing stiff competition from Apple’s iPhone and Google’s Android devices. Recent reports revealed that IBM considered buying RIM's enterprise division. IBM made an informal approach for the enterprise business that operates the servers used for supporting BlackBerry email and messaging services, according to Bloomberg. However, the report added that no talks were underway. Under the leadership of new chief executive, Thorsten Heins, RIM has hired bankers for a strategic review that could include a potential sale and partnerships for its technology.