BlackBerry posts record revenue on Torch sales

September 17th, 2010 - 11:29 am ICT by IANS  

By Gurmukh Singh
Toronto, Sep 17 (IANS) Beating all negative forecasts and reports of less-than-enthusiastic response to its new Torch smart phone, BlackBerry maker Research in Motion (RIM) has posted a record profit for the second quarter.

RIM co-CEO Jim Balsillie ascribed the spectacular results to the BlackBerry Torch 9800 slider smart phone which was written off by many analysts immediately after its launch in August.

The embattled Canadian wireless giant, facing onslaught from Apple’s iPhone 4 and Google Android devices as well as ban threats from many countries, including India, Thursday reported a 31 percent jump in its revenue over the same period last year to clock in $4.62 billion.

The Waterloo-based company said it also added 4.5 million new subscribers during the quarter, taking its subscription base to 50 million.

The company’s net income during the quarter jumped to $796.7 million, up from $768 million in the prior quarter.

“RIM set another new record in the quarter by shipping over 12 million BlackBerry smart phones. This accomplishment and RIM’s solid financial results during the second quarter were driven by effective business execution and strong demand for RIM’s portfolio of BlackBerry smart phones and services in markets around the world,” said RIM co-CEO Jim Balsillie.

“We expect a continuation of this momentum in the third quarter as we extend the rollout of new products including the BlackBerry Torch into additional markets and benefit from heavy promotional activities and increasing customer demand as we head into the holiday buying season,” he added.

Balsillie told analysts that earlier in the quarter RIM faced tough competition from its rivals, but the arrival of the Torch smart phone (with a slide-out keyboard) changed it all.

“If there was some softening early in the quarter, that’s dramatically reversed,” he was quoted as saying.

Thanks to the Torch, he said BlackBerry smart phones reported their best sales month in August at Best Buy stores in North America. He said RIM will unveil new strategies at a conference later this month.

The BlackBerry boss said he was ‘optimistic’ about finding a solution to demands by many countries which are seeking access to its secure encrypted emails.

He said “there is a lot of misleading and inaccurate information out there” about the company’s efforts to find a solution in these countries, including India.

(Gurmukh Singh can be contacted at gurmukh.s@ians.in)

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