Research in Motion’s two co-CEOs, Jim Balsillie and Mike Lazaridis, stepped out while Thorsten Heins was appointed as new President and CEO of the company. Heins has been named unanimously by the board “acting on the recommendation of its Co-Chief Executive Officers to implement the succession plan they previously submitted.”
Mike Lazaridis became Vice Chair of RIM’s Board (working closely with Heins “to offer strategic counsel, provide a smooth transition and continue to promote the BlackBerry brand worldwide”) and Chair of the Board’s new Innovation Committee; Jim Balsillie remains a member of the Board.
“There comes a time in the growth of every successful company when the founders recognize the need to pass the baton to new leadership. Jim and I went to the Board and told them that we thought that time was now”, said Lazaridis. “With BlackBerry 7 now out, PlayBook 2.0 shipping in February and BlackBerry 10 expected to ship later this year, the company is entering a new phase, and we felt it was time for a new leader to take it through that phase and beyond. Jim, the Board and I all agreed that leader should be Thorsten Heins”, he added.
“As with any company that has grown as fast as we have, there have been inevitable growing pains. We have learned from those challenges and, I believe, we have and will become a stronger company as a result”, Heins said.
Research in Motion is moving from a rather unusual model of not one, but two co-CEOs to something we’re more accustomed to: one person, Thorsten Heins, as the sole CEO. Will this be enough to solve the problems the company is facing?
Not only that but, with any top-level change comes a new vision, a new path and a new strategy. RIM has lost a lot in the near-past but it hasn’t yet reached the point of no return. It will be interesting to see the direction Research in Motion will start heading in, especially with BlackBerry OS 10 and the PlayBook 2 not far out.
Source: Research in Motion