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December 3, 2013

BlackBerry mobile sales decline to near zero

But interim CEO says firm is ‘very much alive, thank you'.

By CBR Staff Writer

BlackBerry mobile phone sales dropped to nearly none at all in major markets over the third quarter, according to a report.

Sales in the US, China, Spain and Japan plunged for the former powerhouse, while the UK remained its best-selling market over the three months ending October, a new report from Kantar Worldpanel ComTech claimed.

The latest report for smartphone sales revealed that the Canadian firm’s market share in the US dropped to 0.8%, despite massive market growth.

Its shares in China, Spain and Japan dropped to less than a tenth of a percent, which is rounded to zero, the report added.

The drop in BlackBerry sales comes after its much-hyped attempts to sell itself to a private equity group, and to raise $1bn while simultaneously firing its CEO, Thorsten Heins.

However, interim CEO John Chen claimed the company is "very much alive", making his intentions clear about refocusing the Canadian smartphone manufacturer on its core business roots.

"We’re going back to our heritage and roots – delivering enterprise-grade, end-to-end mobile solutions," Chen said.

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"Our ‘for sale’ sign has been taken down and we are here to stay."

In September, Blackberry agreed to be acquired by a consortium led by Fairfax Financial for $4.7bn, in the wake of a severe loss of market share to Apple’s iPhone and Google’s Android powered devices, but the plan was scrapped in favour of raising $1bn.

Fairfax will contribute $250m to the total sum.

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