Research In Motion (RIM), has finally filled in the gap created by former CMO Keith Pardy’s resignation from the position. RIM just announced that it has hired French telecom executive Frank Boulben as the company’s new Chief Marketing Officer (CMO). Apart from that, RIM also hired Kristian Tear as Chief Operating Officer (COO).
Previously, Kristian served as Executive Vice President at Sony Mobile Communications AB, as a Chairman of the Product Business Council, Chairman of the Accessories Business Unit, Board member of Sony Mobile Japan and China. He has also served as the Corporate Vice President of Sony Ericsson Western Europe based in Munich, with responsibility for the region Western Europe and Global Customer Accounts. Prior to that, he served as Corporate Vice President at Sony Ericsson Headquarters in London. From 1999-2005, he served as President and CEO of Ericsson in various regions and markets, including in South East Asia, Germany, Switzerland and Austria and Central America. As for Frank Boulben, he comes LightSquared where he served as Executive Vice President for Strategy, Marketing and Sales.
Why is this important?
RIM, of late, has been in huge turmoil. RIM’s share price has tumbled more than 75 percent in the past 13 months. BlackBerry’s market share has been more or less flat and had failed to attract customers in last couple of months. RIM’s global smartphone market share slipped to 6.7 percent in the first quarter of 2012 from 13.6 percent a year earlier, according to research firm IDC. The only thing that could save RIM is BlackBerry 10 OS which is not making its debut until late 2012.
If you look at RIM’s recent marketing strategies — wakeupbehold, it’s just yawn-worthy even though it’s trying to take a jab at Apple’s iPhone. RIM needs someone to make BlackBerry’s cool. With the new hires, hopefully, RIM will suck less now.