New chair tipped to lead BlackBerry maker: report

January 3, 2012
An official of Research in Motion (RIM) displays a newly launched BlackBerry bold 9900 at a function in New Delhi in August. A former banker and stock exchange head, Barbara Stymiest, could become the first-ever independent chair of RIM in a shakeup of the beleaguered BlackBerry maker.

A former banker and stock exchange head could become the first-ever independent chair of Research in Motion in a shakeup of the beleaguered BlackBerry maker, a report said Tuesday.

The National Post, citing sources familiar with a review of RIM's governance structure, said Barbara Stymiest, 55, an independent director who joined RIM's board in 2007, has been tipped for the post.

RIM would only say that a committee of independent directors were "on track" to study the company's governance structure and report their findings by the end of January.

The board will then respond within 30 days to the committee's recommendations, a RIM spokesman said.

The review was demanded by a group of shareholders unhappy with the direction set by co-founders Mike Lazaridis and Jim Balsillie that led to RIM's stock price sinking under the weight of gloomy earnings figures.

The Waterloo, Ontario-based RIM saw its share of smartphone subscribers fall to 16.6 percent from 19.7 percent in the key US market after a major outage in October, while RIM shares lost 80 percent of their value in the past year.

The board committee was asked to assess the merits of having an independent chair and of reducing the board roles of Lazaridis and Balsillie, who are also RIM's co-chief executives.

RIM agreed to the governance review last July to avoid a public confrontation with shareholders at its annual meeting. A group of shareholders proposed splitting the chair and chief executive roles to boost accountability.

Stymiest, 55, is the former head of the TSX Group, which operates the , and the Royal Bank of Canada's former chief operating officer.

Explore further: RIM shareholder calls for separate CEO, chairman

Related Stories

RIM shareholder calls for separate CEO, chairman

June 11, 2011

(AP) -- BlackBerry maker Research in Motion Ltd. is already struggling to keep up with rivals such as Apple Inc. Now it faces another challenge: dissident shareholders who are calling for changes in how the company is run.

BlackBerry maker sees challenges in phone launch

July 13, 2011

(AP) -- BlackBerry maker Research In Motion Ltd.'s co-CEO told shareholders Tuesday that the company is facing challenges as it moves toward what it calls its biggest product launch yet.

RIM shares soar on Icahn stake reports

September 27, 2011

Shares of Research In Motion rose sharply on Wall Street on Tuesday amid speculation that billionaire US investor Carl Icahn has taken a stake in the troubled BlackBerry maker.

RIM shares fall on disappointing results

September 15, 2011

Shares in Research In Motion (RIM) fell sharply in after-hours trading on Thursday after the BlackBerry maker said it shipped fewer smartphones and tablet computers than expected in the quarter.

Blackberry maker RIM to buy back $1.2 bln in stock

November 5, 2009

Blackberry smartphone maker Research in Motion (RIM) announced Thursday it would buy back 1.2 billion US dollars worth of its stock to prop up the sagging share price amid heightened competition.

RIM shares plunge on lowered earnings outlook

December 4, 2011

Research In Motion shares plunged Friday as the struggling BlackBerry maker said it will not meet its annual earnings target and it is taking a $485 million charge because of weak sales of the PlayBook tablet computer.

Recommended for you

AI and 5G in focus at top mobile fair

February 24, 2018

Phone makers will seek to entice new buyers with better cameras and bigger screens at the world's biggest mobile fair starting Monday in Spain after a year of flat smartphone sales.

Google Assistant adds more languages in global push

February 23, 2018

Google said Friday its digital assistant software would be available in more than 30 languages by the end of the years as it steps up its artificial intelligence efforts against Amazon and others.


Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.