Business

BlackBerry still bleeding: cuts 250 R&D jobs & loses PlayBook VP

Above: Blackberry Z10

Image Credit: Devindra Hardawar/VentureBeat
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After brief flashes of hope, BlackBerry’s prospects are starting to dim once more.

The company confirmed today that it has laid off 250 workers in its product testing facility in Waterloo, Ontario.

BlackBerry says the move is the latest in its ongoing attempts to save its future. “This is part of the next stage of our turnaround plan to increase efficiencies and scale our company correctly for new opportunities in mobile computing. We will be as transparent as possible as those plans evolve,” BlackBerry told Canada’s CBC News in a statement.

The layoff confirmation comes a day after The Wall Street Journal reported that David J. Smith, the vice president in charge of the unsuccessful PlayBook tablet, had resigned from his job. (BlackBerry CEO Thorsten Heins confirmed in May that his company wouldn’t be updating the device.)

But Smith wasn’t alone. Also departing BlackBerry in recent weeks is former U.S. sales head Richard Piasentin, who was fired earlier this month.

The situation is pretty grim for BlackBerry, which still managed to lose $8.4 million last quarter in spite of its BlackBerry 10 launch, which was supposed to help turn things around.


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