Dec. 17, 2015, 5:30 PM
Dec. 10, 2015, 2:24 PM
- BlackBerry (NASDAQ:BBRY) has surged on volume of 10.1M shares, soundly above a 3-month daily average of 6.3M. Possibly helping: Wal-Mart's site indicates BlackBerry's Priv Android phone is out of stock.
- BlackBerry began shipping the Priv, 5.4" display, QWERTY keyboard, Google Android, and all, to decent reviews in early November. The phone has sold in the U.S. for a steep unsubsidized price of $700.
- Today's gains come ahead of BlackBerry's Dec. 18 FQ3 report. With 78.7M shares (15% of the float) shorted as of Nov. 30, short-covering could be helping.
Dec. 3, 2015, 7:21 AM
- BlackBerry (NASDAQ:BBRY) is dumping a major feature of its enterprise software comeback plan only a year after launching it.
- Effective February 10, 2016, the BBM Meetings service will be discontinued, the company said in a blog post.
- "For customers using the service, and who wish to continue to use a mobile-first web conferencing solution, BlackBerry is pleased to facilitate a direct relationship with our preferred partner and vendor, Zoom Communications."
Nov. 30, 2015, 6:11 AM
- BlackBerry (NASDAQ:BBRY) is shutting its Pakistan operations to avoid allowing authorities in the nation to monitor its main business enterprise server and e-mail messages.
- The Pakistan Telecommunication Authority notified the country's mobile phone operators in July that BlackBerry's BES servers would no longer be allowed to operate for security reasons, Marty Beard, chief operating officer at BlackBerry, said in a blog post on Monday. "The truth is that the Pakistani government wanted the ability to monitor all BES traffic."
- Update: Since this post, Pakistan has notified BlackBerry that it has extended its shutdown order from November 30 to December 30. BlackBerry will delay its exit from the Pakistan market until then.
Nov. 17, 2015, 3:36 AM
- BlackBerry (NASDAQ:BBRY) is expecting to post a profit next year, helped by the launch of its Priv model, as the company recovers from a bruising few years that saw it lose its dominant position in the smartphone market.
- "The company is doing reasonably well now, from a financial standpoint, so now our focus is to grow our businesses," CEO John Chen told CNBC in Manila. "We still have very high fixed costs but [handset] profitability will come next year."
- For the three months ended August 29, BlackBerry reported a quarterly loss of $66M.
Nov. 6, 2015, 5:33 PM
- [M]aybe, just maybe, it isn’t too late for BlackBerry (NASDAQ:BBRY)," writes the WSJ's Joanna Stern after trying out the Priv. "As Samsung, LG and other Android titans focus on making phones ever-so-slightly thinner, faster and better at taking photos, the Priv’s slide-out physical keyboard, long battery life and focus on privacy—hence the dumb name—stand apart from those. It even challenges Apple’s ruling iPhone. A few performance issues aside, the Priv is the first BlackBerry in years that I have loved using—and that I can recommend."
- Stern found typing via the Priv's keyboard ~20% faster than typing on the iPhone, and likes its 2K OLED display. She also declares BlackBerry's Android apps and UI tweaks, such as its DTEK security suite and the ability to swipe up on an icon to see its widget, "actually make Android better." One point of criticism: Some app functions remained "inexcusably slow."
- Engadget's Daniel Cooper gives the Priv a score of 77/100. He calls the phone "probably the best-looking BlackBerry ever," and considers its UI "more elegant" than stock Android. However, they keyboard is deemed "slightly lackluster."
- Cooper also wonders how large the market for QWERTY smartphones remains: "The fact that a company in 2015 is making a pretty decent Android smartphone with a keyboard deserves plenty of praise, because people do still crave them. I just can't imagine anyone who has become inured to using an on-screen keyboard will consider dropping seven hundred big ones to go back to how it was."
- BlackBerry made it above $8 today for the first time since July. Shares are still down 27% YTD.
- Other reviews: The Verge, Android Central, Tom's Guide, TechCrunch
- Earlier: BlackBerry begins shipping Priv Android phone
Nov. 6, 2015, 4:50 AM
- BlackBerry (NASDAQ:BBRY) will start shipping its first Android powered smartphone today, called the Priv, marking the fourth new device released under the leadership of CEO John Chen.
- Standout features include a 5'4" curved display, an 18 MP dual-flash camera and a slide out physical QWERTY keyboard. The device is priced at a steep $699 (unsubsidized).
- A little too late? According to IDC, the once-dominant smartphone maker doesn't even hold 1% of the world-wide market now.
- Previously: U.K. pre-orders begin for BlackBerry's Priv Android phone; specs confirmed (Oct. 19 2015)
Nov. 2, 2015, 9:50 AM
- BlackBerry's (BBRY +0.4%) $425M purchase of fellow enterprise mobility management (EMM) software vendor Good Technology is officially on the books. BlackBerry reiterates it expects Good to produce ~$160M in GAAP revenue (accounts for a deferred revenue write-down) in the first year after closing.
- John Chen: "The Good and BlackBerry solutions are very complementary ... Combined, BlackBerry solves one of the biggest challenges for CIOs - to securely manage all types of deployment models for any device operating system platform, whether on-premise or in the cloud." An IDC analyst is quoted as saying Good "brings additional value to the BlackBerry platform by offering strong application containerization on iOS and Android, and will provide solutions to containerize custom and third-party applications."
- The deal generally saw positive reactions when announced in September, with analysts praising Good's large enterprise base (over 6,200 organizations), iOS positioning, and developer ecosystem. Some questions were raised about the challenges involved in integrating Good's platform with BES.
Oct. 19, 2015, 1:51 PM
- U.K. retailer Carphone Warehouse has begun taking pre-orders for BlackBerry's (BBRY +0.4%) Priv Android phone. The device, slide-out keyboard/touchpad and all, goes for a steep £579.99 ($899) unsubsidized. Monthly payment plans start at £49/month ($76/month). Delivery is promised by Nov. 6.
- Carphone has also confirmed the Priv's specs. The phone has a curved 5.4" 2K OLED display, an 18MP rear camera with dual-LED flash, a 2MP front camera, a Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM) Snapdragon 808 processor, 3GB of RAM, 32GB of internal storage, and a large 3,410mAh battery. (promo video)
- BlackBerry is hoping the Priv, which pairs Google's version of Android (and all the Google apps/services bundled with it) with BlackBerry apps/services, will carve out a niche with keyboard enthusiasts and high-end enterprise/government users. The company recognized revenue on just 800K phones in FQ2 (the August quarter), down from 1.1M in FQ1 and 2.1M a year ago.
- John Chen has suggested BlackBerry could exit the smartphone market if it doesn't sell 5M phones/year, the level he considers necessary for the company's smartphone ops to be profitable.
Oct. 13, 2015, 11:25 AM
- Wayne G. Wouters, formerly Canada's Clerk of the Privy Council (its senior civil servant), is joining BlackBerry's (BBRY +1.6%) board. He'll serve on the audit and risk management committee.
- Wouters increases the size of BlackBerry's board to eight. Seven of the directors are declared to be independent members (John Chen is the other). Selling to government agencies, of course, remains a priority for BlackBerry.
Sep. 25, 2015, 9:39 AM
- Dubbed Priv, the phone - complete with slide-out keyboard - is due out at the end of 2015. Priv, of course, is short for privacy, and that's what this new phone is all about. CEO John Chen: "Priv will be the solution for smartphone users who are learning daily of the lack of privacy they have on their current devices."
- Chen adds the company remains committed to its own BlackBerry 10, and says a new update is coming early next year.
- After spending $47M buying back 6M shares last quarter, the company announces an additional 15M share repurchase plan.
- BBRY -2.2%
- Previously: BlackBerry sinks after weak quarter (Sept. 25)
- Previously: BlackBerry misses by $0.04 (Sept. 25)
Sep. 25, 2015, 7:30 AM
- FQ2 revenue of $490M was well short of the $611M estimate. Hardware revenue of $200M vs. $263M consensus, with the company recognizing revenue on just 800K smartphones at an ASP of $240.
- Software revenue of $74M vs. $100M consensus and Services revenue of $210M vs. $227M.
- Gross margin of 37.8% vs. 48.5% estimate.
- Total cash of $3.35B (net cash of $2.1B) at quarter-end, up $37M from three months earlier. 6M shares bought back during quarter for $47M.
- Company anticipates modest sequential revenue growth for the rest of fiscal 2016.
- Previously: BlackBerry misses by $0.04 (Sept. 25)
- Conference call at 8 ET
- BBRY -7.5% premarket
Sep. 25, 2015, 7:03 AM
- BlackBerry (NASDAQ:BBRY): FQ2 EPS of -$0.13 misses by $0.04.
- GAAP Revenue of $490M (-46.5% Y/Y)
- Shares +2.2% PM.
Sep. 24, 2015, 5:30 PM
Sep. 17, 2015, 5:54 PM
- John Chen: "We have today about 44,000 patents. The good thing about this is that we also have one of the youngest patent portfolios in the entire industry, so monetization of our patents is an important aspect of our turnaround."
- He cautions BlackBerry (NASDAQ:BBRY) needs to avoid alienating potential partners along the way. "If you go too far and become too aggressive, you become a [patent] troll ... If you want to go about monetizing your patents in a non-aggressive, legal way then it takes time, and in a turnaround time is one of the key commodities you don't have, so balancing those two is very difficult."
- BlackBerry's FQ1 (May quarter) software/licensing revenue rose 150% Y/Y to $137M (21% of total revenue), thanks to licensing deals with Cisco and an unnamed company. FQ2 results arrive on Sep. 25.
Sep. 4, 2015, 5:58 PM
- "With the majority of Good’s customers using iOS or Apple devices, we view this acquisition as positive for BlackBerry’s (NASDAQ:BBRY) ability to broaden its customer reach, especially with our survey work indicating ongoing share gains for Apple in the enterprise market," writes Canaccord's Mike Walkley about BlackBerry's $425M deal to buy enterprise mobility management (EMM) software rival Good Technology. "[Good] should also help BlackBerry build on its two new technology licensing deals announced last quarter."
- At the same time, Walkley notes some of Good's revenue comes from BlackBerry licensing payments, and argues BlackBerry still "faces the challenging task of selling not just EMM subscriptions but must also upsell increasing amounts of [value-added services] and close additional technology licensing deals to meet its [FY16] software-related sales target."
- Morningstar's Brian Colello: "Good ... has been a leader in EMM for quite some time, as evidenced by Gartner’s rating of Good as a 'Leader' in its magic quadrant for EMM in June 2015 (versus a 'Niche Player' rating for BlackBerry). We anticipate that the combination will lead to more advanced products and a growing customer base over time." In addition to Good, IBM, Citrix, VMware (AirWatch), and MobileIron are in Gartner's Leaders quadrant.
- UBS' Amitabh Passi: "Good serves more than 6,200 organizations, with particular strength in Government, [aerospace & defense], healthcare, and commercial banks. Good with its Good Dynamics platform will also bring access to over 2000 independent software vendor (ISV) apps."
- VentureBeat's Jack Gold notes questions remain about integrating Good's platform with BES. "BlackBerry does have experience here with its many recent acquisitions, but Good has much more technology to integrate than the previous acquisitions did, and far more overlap in capabilities. And the cultures of the two companies are different ... I expect [integration] will be successful given [John Chen's] track record, but it may not be without some 'potholes' along the way."
- After opening higher in response to the deal, BlackBerry closed down 2.4% amid a 1.1% Nasdaq drop. M&A hopes helped BlackBerry/Good rival MobileIron (NASDAQ:MOBL) rise 3.9%.