News / Economy

BlackBerry Posts Surprise Profit

A new Blackberry Z10 smartphone is displayed at a store in New York, Mar. 22, 2013.
A new Blackberry Z10 smartphone is displayed at a store in New York, Mar. 22, 2013.
Reuters
BlackBerry reported a surprise quarterly profit on Thursday and said it shipped 1 million of its all-new Z10 smartphones in the period, but the company has yet to convince some investors that its turnaround plan is succeeding.
          
The Canadian smartphone maker's shares were up nearly 2 percent in early trading, but had jumped of more than 10 percent immediately after the results came out. Some investors focused on a decline in the company's subscriber base, a possible threat to its long-term growth prospects.
 
Still, the results offered solace to both bulls and bears on BlackBerry, which virtually invented on-your-hip email, but has lost market share to iPhone maker Apple and smartphones using Google Inc's Android software.
 
“I think the 1 million units is a nice start,” said Morningstar analyst Brian Colello.
 
“I think the encouraging thing is that BlackBerry was still able to sell a good portion of older models and generate solid service revenue during the transition. I think that will be important in terms of cash balance and profitability.”
 
The touchscreen Z10, which uses an all-new operating system, is key to BlackBerry's revival. Its introduction a month before the end of the quarter received a warm reception in Canada and a few other countries, but the initial U.S. launch, just last week, was muted.
 
Some analysts said revenue missed expectations and that the decline in subscriber numbers to 76 million from 79 million during the fourth quarter ended March 2 clouded BlackBerry's long-term turnaround prospects.
 
The stock was up 1.9 percent at $14.83 in early trading on Nasdaq.
 
Break-even forcast

BlackBerry said Mike Lazaridis, who co-founded BlackBerry nearly 30 years ago, would step down as vice chairman and director. Lazaridis was co-chief executive officer until last year.
 
The company also surprised investors by saying it believes it will approach break-even financial results in its first quarter, based on a lower cost base, more efficient supply chain and improved hardware margins.
 
Analysts on average had expected a loss of 10 cents a share in the first quarter, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
          
BlackBerry said net income in the fourth quarter was $98 million, or 19 cents a share, compared with a year-earlier loss of $125 million, or 24 cents a share.

Excluding one-time items, the company reported a profit of 22 cents a share. Analysts had expected a loss.

Yet the company is not out of the woods. Quarterly revenue fell to $2.68 billion from $4.2 billion a year earlier, below analysts' estimates of $2.84 billion.
 
“All in all, I'm happy because I think the majority seemed to be expecting the world to cave in on them, and that did not happen,” said Eric Jackson, founder and managing partner of Ironfire Capital LLC, which owns BlackBerry shares.

You May Like

DRC Tries Mega-Farms to Feed Population

Park at Boukanga Lonzo currently has 5,000 hectares under cultivation, crops stretching as far as eye can see, and is start of ambitious large-scale agriculture plan More

Video Survivor Video Testimonies Recount Horrors of Guatemalan Genocide

During a conflict that spanned more than three decades, tens of thousands of indigenous Mayans were killed More

Video War, Drought Threaten Iraq's Marshlands

Areas are spawning ground for Gulf fisheries, a resting place for migrating wildfowl, source of livelihood for fishermen and herders who have called the marshes home for generations More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOAi
X
August 31, 2015 2:17 AM
Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOA

Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video War, Drought Threaten Iraq's Marshlands

Iraq's southern wetlands are in crisis. These areas are the spawning ground for Gulf fisheries, a resting place for migrating wildfowl, and source of livelihood for fishermen and herders. Faith Lapidus has more.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Rebuilding New Orleans' Music Scene

Ten years after Hurricane Katrina inundated New Orleans, threatening to wash away its vibrant musical heritage along with its neighborhoods, the beat goes on. As Bronwyn Benito and Faith Lapidus report, a Musicians' Village is preserving the city's unique sound.
Video

Video In Russia, Auto Industry in Tailspin

Industry insiders say country relies too heavily on imports as inflation cuts too many consumers out of the market. Daniel Schearf has more from Moscow.
Video

Video Scientist Calls Use of Fetal Tissue in Medical Research Essential

An anti-abortion group responsible for secret recordings of workers at a women's health care organization claims the workers shown are offering baby parts for sale, a charge the organization strongly denies. While the selling of fetal tissue is against the law in the United States, abortion and the use of donated fetal tissue for medical research are both legal. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.

VOA Blogs

World Currencies

EUR
USD
0.8916
JPY
USD
121.32
GBP
USD
0.6487
CAD
USD
1.3252
INR
USD
66.401

Rates may not be current.