Apple Recruiting BlackBerry Employees as BB Faces Existential Crisis

| Analysis

Apple is striking while the iron is hot with a recruiting drive to hire some BlackBerry employees. Canadian Newspaper The Financial Post reported that Apple held a recruiting event at the Cambridge Hotel and Conference Centre near Waterloo, Ontario, where BlackBerry is based.

The event was held on September 26th, and the invitations were sent through LinkedIn. Coinciding with Apple's event is the very real crisis that BlackBerry finds itself in. The company recently announced layoffs of 40 percent of its work force, and the company is entertaining a buyout offer from Fairfax Financial, as well as piecemeal offers from companies like Cisco, Google, and even SAP.

"Most positions will be based in Cupertino, CA.," Apple told potential recruits through a LinkedIn invite obtained by The Financial Post. "Relocation and immigration assistance will be provided for candidates that are hired, as needed."

BlackBerry has some very talented engineers, and it is those employees who helped BlackBerry amass a substantial patent portfolio over the years. Apple probably isn't the only company that has been trying to grab the best of BlackBerry's employees, but holding a recruiting event shows that Apple is serious about getting those employees.


TMO's Dramatic Representation of the Corporate World's Reaction to BlackBerry

BlackBerry, or Research In Motion (RIM) as the company used to be called, once dominated the smartphone industry. The company was the first to crack the code for doing corporate email in a way that made sense for mobile devices, and it found enormous success in the enterprise market and with governments around the world.

Apple's iPhone and Google's Android platform rewrote the rules for smartphones, and RIM/BlackBerry's management proved unable to adopt to those changing rules. The tablet market caught RIM/BlackBerry even more off guard, and the company's sales have dropped faster than Newton's apple*.

Remember the how the BlackBerry Playbook was an iPad killer because it was going to support Flash? Remember when the current BlackBerry CEO Thorsten Heinz said (in April!) that tablets were a fad that would be dead in five years?

Good times. Unless you're a BlackBerry shareholder or employee. Hopefully the best of those employees can find a new future at Apple and the other tech giants that are circling BlackBerry.

Image courtesy of Shutterstock.

[Via MacRumors]

[Update: the article was corrected to specify the event was held near Waterloo, Ontario. A hat tip to a reader for the correction. - Bryan]

*Not really. BlackBerry's sales and Newton's apple both fell at the same rate, but LOL #amiright?

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Indeed, assuming that both were in free-fall, Newton’s Apple and Blackberry’s sales would indeed have fallen at the same rate.

Great graphic, which lends a fittingly portending spirit to your article’s theme. The pathos of Blackberry’s impending fate, in light of the erstwhile and all-to-recent mirth and heady self-assuredness at court in Waterloo (the irony in that name alone) is almost Shakespearean in nature. I can almost see Hamlet poignantly lofting the skull, and lamenting, ‘Alas, poor Thorsten! I knew him, Horatio: a fellow of infinite jest, of most excellent fancy…’ Except that, in this case, Hamlet should rather be lamenting the fate of both company and employees in equal measure; their demise having been so readily preventable with a modicum of foresight and imagination.

Down to dust, too, appears to have gone the interminable wrangling, at times vitriolic, about Flash and Apple’s eschewing of it in their iPad, and whether and when this would doom this quixotic tablet to a premature and ignominious death. Instead, it would appear that the iPad is living long enough to see its would-be rivals untimely interred.

To end with the Bard,

“Our revels now are ended. These our actors,
As I foretold you, were all spirits and
Are melted into air, into thin air…“1

1. William Shakespeare
From The Tempest, Act 4 Scene 1

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