Research in Motion (RIM) has managed to offset its lost US market share by building its presence abroad. But the maker of BlackBerry phones aims to do more than compensate – it wants to grow. (STAY AHEAD OF THE CURVE: Follow Kapitall on Twitter)
Lost US Share
Kapitall had earlier reported there are millions of devoted BlackBerry fanatics that range from President Barack Obama to studio artists. Drawn by its speed and BlackBerry Messenger services, they aren’t going anywhere.
Still, it’s pretty well known that the company is losing significant market share to Android and Apple phones in the US and Canada. But don’t feel too bad for RIM, they have other markets up their sleeves.
Emerging markets have proved successful for RIM: Demand is strong thanks to BlackBerry’s compatibility with the older networks (2G and 3G) common in developing nations. Some strong markets include Saudi Arabia, Venezuela, India, and Indonesia.
“Shipments in the Middle East and Africa more than doubled to 2.29 million units in the fourth quarter from a year earlier, outselling the iPhone by a margin of 4-to-1, IDC data show,” writes Bloomberg.
“In February, RIM said it is planning about 4,000 outlets across Indonesia, including dedicated BlackBerry stores, store-in-stores and kiosks, a “proving ground” for an expansion across southeast Asia.”
Dubai and Africa
The 1,500 square f00t flagship store is in its final stages of lease negotiations, reports Bloomberg. But that’s not all… Sandeep Saihgal, managing director of RIM’s Middle East business, says stores are planned across the region.
“We’re getting the first one up and running and then we’ll be looking at other cities across the Middle East — Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Qatar,” he told Bloomberg.
“The Middle East expansion will probably be followed by Africa, with RIM planning flagship stores in markets including Nairobi, Kenya, and Lagos, Nigeria,” said Patrick Spence, RIM’s global head of sales.
Business Section: Investing Ideas
Do you think Research In Motion has a good shot at a rebound? Here are some tools to help you follow the company.
To start off, use Kapitall’s Compar-O-Matic to compare changes in market cap of RIM and competitors:
Compare monthly returns:
Compare quarterly sales:
Compare RIM’s performance against the Standard & Poor 500 index (SPX):
Written by Rebecca Lipman.