Research In Motion today announced its Q3 fiscal 2013 results. Revenues came in at US$2.7 billion, down 5% from Q2’s US$2.9 billion and down 47% from US$5.2 billion the same quarter a year ago. As a result, the company posted a loss of US$114 million or US$0.22 per share but beat Wall Street’s expectation of a loss of US$0.35 a share.
“RIM continued to execute on its product roadmap plans and to deliver on key financial metrics as it gets set for the global launch of BlackBerry 10,” said Thorsten Heins, President and CEO. “During the third quarter, we continued to demonstrate our strong financial position, generating $950 million in cash flow from operations, and increasing our cash position significantly to more than $2.9 billion. More than 150 carriers are currently completing technical acceptance programs for the first BlackBerry 10 products, and beta trials of BlackBerry Enterprise Service 10 are underway at more than 120 enterprises including 64 Fortune 500 companies. This is an exciting time and our carrier partners, application developers and employees are all looking forward to unveiling the innovation and excitement of BlackBerry 10 to our customers on January 30, 2013.”
RIM shipped 6.9 million BlackBerry smartphones and about 255,000 BlackBerry PlayBooks. In all, hardware accounted for 60% of its revenues.
For the first time ever, RIM saw its BlackBerry subscriber base fall. At the end of this latest quarter, RIM had 79 million users, losing about 1 million since August. A breakdown of numbers was not provided but it’s likely that growth in emerging markets such as Nigeria and the Philippines is not enough to offset losses in mature markets such as North America.
The company expects its next quarter to be as challenging. The launch of BlackBerry 10 will require significant marketing effort to promote its new operating system and devices. At the same time it expects to take further “pricing initiatives” on BlackBerry 7 devices to maintain its subscriber base. It also expects that BlackBerry 7 sales will be further impacted as customers defer purchases until the new devices launch.
RIM will launch its new BlackBerry 10 devices (including the BlackBerry Z10?) next month. Now the turnaround can begin in earnest.
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