BlackBerry’s owner Research in Motion’s (RIM) share price fell to a seven-year low today after analysts cut profit estimates and problems with the new Blackberry Bold smartphone surfaced.
At the time of writing, RIM’s share price was at US$17.35, the Canadian company’s lowest since 2004.
The Wall Street Journal and Bloomberg report that JMP Securities, Credit Suisse and RBC have all released conservative reports on the company’s long term outlook. It has already seen its share price drop 75% since the beginning of the year.
RBC analyst Mike Abramsky lowered his price target on the stock to $23 from $29 because of slower sales and lower earnings projections.
Alex Gauna from JMP Securities cut his rating on the stock to "market underperform" and reduced his profit estimates, citing competition from lower-priced Android devices.
The company has struggled in the last 18 months. Its failure to develop a viable tablet and touch screen smartphone to challenge Apple’s dominance, combined with the rise of Google’s Android-based smartphones and tablets and a well publicised network outage earlier this year have reduced confidence in the brand.
RIM is now reporting that the new BlackBerry Bold 9900 is having trouble powering on, and has promised a software fix.
As we reported last week, Apple’s iPhone has now displaced the BlackBerry as the enterprise smartphone of choice.
BlackBerry sales have flat-lined in what is a rapidly growing smartphone market (see our story here), causing its market share to fall to just 11%. Smartphone sales are projected to rise by 100 million units per quarter minimum into the foreseeable future.
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