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BlackBerry Ltd (BBRY) Finally Finds a Leader for This Huge Market

Blackberry ltd bbry

BlackBerry Ltd ,  India was without a head for more than three months, but now it has found a new MD. This person is Narendra Nayak, who has spent more than 30 years in the IT and telecom industry, says First Post.

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Priv may not do well in India

Nayak has worked with Motorola from 1994 to 1998 as its Country Sales Manager, and with CSC India and IBM India as well. He has been an active participant in the Indian telecom revolution right from the days when pagers were cutting edge.

BlackBerry India has already cut out work for Nayak. The firm accounts for less than 1% of market share in the country today, and has been beaten by rivals like Samsung and Apple largely due to its marketing failure, and pricing strategies back-firing.

BlackBerry Ltd does not have much to do in the immediate future on the phone front. Its upcoming BlackBerry Priv will run on Android. It has been appreciated in the West due to its QWERTY keypad and rock-solid reputation of the firm for security. This device will likely be the most secure Android phone today, but will have one drawback – its premium pricing at par with iPhones.

So, the device might be a huge failure in the India as more than 50% of devices in the country are priced below $100, and the country is very sensitive to pricing.

Will a new MD help BlackBerry stay relevant in India

A new MD, reflects BlackBerry’s effort to stay relevant in a vital market, which has almost written-off the Canadian firm. In August, a report from ET, stated that the firms headcount has reduced to less than 25% of what it was a year ago. BlackBerry had 70 employees in 2014, but in August only 15 were left, the report said.

Citing sources familiar with the matter, the report said that the majority of senior executives have left the firm. Sunil Lalvani, head of BlackBerry India quit in June to head the Indian unit of Qualcomm. “It’s been a tough ride for all those in the company. People are moving on for better career options,” one of the sources told the ET.

The new job won’t be easy for the new MD. He will have to address several issues such as dropping market share, clients leaving, executives exiting, and others.

At 9.30 am EDT, BlackBerry Ltd were up 0.03% at $7.32. Year to date, the stock is down over 33% while in the last one-month, it is up almost 13%.

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Aman is MBA (Finance) with an experience on both marketing and Finance side. He has work as a Risk Analyst for AIR Worldwide, and is currently leading VeRa FinServ, a Financial Research firm. Favorite pastimes include watching science fiction movies, playing PC games and cricket.