RIM shares drop as marketing chief leaves company on eve of supposed PlayBook launch

“Research In Motion Ltd., the maker of Blackberry smartphones, said Friday its chief marketing officer Keith Pardy has decided to leave the company for personal reasons,” Phred Dvorak reports for The Wall Street Journal.

MacDailyNews Take: iPad 2, killer.

Dvorak reports, “RIM, based in Waterloo, Ontario, said Mr. Pardy will continue to help the company over a six-month transition period. The departure comes weeks ahead the expected roll-out of RIM’s PlayBook tablet, one of the most significant product launches in the company’s history.”

MacDailyNews Take: PlayBook? PlayDead is more like it. Except RIM won’t be faking that.

Read more in the full article here.

In a companion WSJ article, Dave Kansas reports, “PlayBook will arrive after iPad 2’s launch, which came with much ballyhoo – including a surprise appearance from Steve Jobs – earlier this week. The lower price point for the sleeker iPad 2 is already causing havoc for Motorola Mobility, maker of the already released Xoom. Its shares are down from a high of 36.34 in January to 26.55 today.”

Kansas reports, “Mr. Pardy says he will spend six months in a transition period, but his departure on the eve of the PlayBook launch is rattling investors today.”

MacDailyNews Take: Blood in the water. The fleeing has begun. Shares of RIM are currently down 3%.

29 Comments

  1. …”Wouldn’t it be refreshing to hear, “Our product is shit….”

    He likely quite because that is EXACTLY what he wanted, but couldn’t, say…

  2. He probably got too stressed out about the impossible task of marketing vapor PlayBook against the reality of iPad 2. A no-win scenario. He chose NOT to “play.”

  3. I find it very strange that investors are being rattled by the marketing guy leaving. It’s not like he’s the only one at RIM handling the marketing. I’m pretty sure he’s not calling journalists, placing ads himself, designing the web page, etc.

    It’s also funny that he’s leaving “on the eve of the launch”. Um, has an actual launch date been set?

    1. The “boss” of marketing leaving so suddenly could mean there is an internal dispute about (or difficulty with) how to position and sell an upcoming product. Or it could be totally unrelated to PlayBook. I don’t think it takes too much to “rattle” RIMM investors these days.

  4. RIM’s desperately needing press and internet hits. Lacking anything meaningful about products to report, they are now throwing people to the sharks one at a time for daily relevancy. 😉

  5. Pardy can see the world-historic embarrassment coming. In order to have a salvageable career, he must perform the technicality of leaving before the official launch.

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