Lenovo Interested In Buying RIM’s Hardware Division
RIM is about to release its latest BlackBerry 10 platform by next week. But even with this new development, the Canadian company is not off the hook when it comes to its market predicament. BlackBerry is a platform on the decline, and apart from BB10, RIM is thinking of ways to revitalize its business. Among the possibilities is licensing is operating system or even selling off its hardware division.
Lenovo is reportedly mulling over a purchase of RIM’s traditionally-unprofitable hardware division as it determines how best to move into the international smartphone and tablet market.
Lenovo is the world’s number two PC manufacturer, and although sales have been strong over the last few quarters, rocketing past Dell in market share, desktop and laptop sales are slowing in the wake of smartphones and tablet proliferation. Lenovo rose to be the number two smartphone maker in China in 2012, but it has a lot of work to do if it ever wants to be an international player.
Analysts speculate that even if BlackBerry 10 proves a success for the company — which, if early indications are a bellwether, it likely will — RIM may choose to sell its hardware business anyway, focusing on its network and software assets. A partnership with a company like Lenovo or even Samsung, which was also rumoured to be interested in acquiring RIM at one point, could push the Waterloo-based outfit back into the black.
On related news, RIM’s shares rose with the reports of Lenovo’s interest. The Toronto Stock Exchange-listed shares rose 3%. Still analysts say RIM is likely to wait until it launches BlackBerry 10 before seriously considering partnerships or asset sales.