RIM Remake? Company Shops for Financial Advisers.
Research in Motion is interviewing financial advisers to help it with that “comprehensive review of strategic opportunities” that CEO Thorsten Heins announced last month. This according to Bloomberg, which reports RIM is considering hiring one Canadian bank and one global bank.
Our own sources familiar with the matter confirm that this is indeed the case.
It’s not yet clear how far along the process is or what specific opportunities RIM is seeking counsel on, but actively seeking outside financial advice is usually a sign that the company is at least mulling a sale or restructuring. It’s also an indication that Heins is willing to consider a wider range of options than his predecessors. Which is a good thing.
That said, if RIM is mulling a possible sale the company is likely going to run into the same issue that has troubled it in the past when chatter like this has cropped up: RIM’s not a takeover target if no one wants it.
As I’ve written before, “Implicit in the phrase ‘takeover target’ is the idea that someone actually desires the target in question.” And in RIM’s case, I’m not quite sure that’s true.
The company’s market cap is currently about $6.74 billion. Is there anyone willing to spend such a sum plus premium on that? For the chance to turn around RIM’s foundering business? The chance to arrive late to market with another ill-conceived BlackBerry? To make sense of the BlackBerry OS-to-QNX transition? And then to go head to head with Apple and Google, which have been wiping the floor with newcomers and pioneers both?