Latest buyout rumour: Lenovo fancies RIM

Latest buyout rumour: Lenovo fancies RIM

Weekend news detail often gives us the chance to catch up on some of the more unusual rumours swirling about the mobile scene, and right now a lot of it has to do with RIM, no surprise given the upcoming BlackBerry 10 launch on January 30.

So work in the old pinch of salt analogy however you like on this one: apparently Chinese PC giant Lenovo is said to be considering a move to acquire the BlackBerry maker to boost its presence in the smartphone arena.

It goes like this: Bloomberg reports that Lenovo is looking at a number of options to raise its smartphone game, with CFO Wong Wai Ming having name-dropped acquiring RIM as one of those options in an interview this week.

“We are looking at all opportunities – RIM and many others,” Ming is reported to have said in Switzerland through the week. “We’ll have no hesitation if the right opportunity comes along that could benefit us and shareholders.”

That's of course well short of the opening moves of an actual bid, of course. But with RIM's current newsworthiness due to the BB10 launch there's as much speculation swirling around as to what will happen if the platform proves a flop as there is should it prove a success.

RIM itself has hinted a few times that it would be open to licensing BlackBerry 10 to other hardware makers, which has triggered further speculation that it may look to focus purely on the software side of things and ditch its handset division should the OS prove more popular than the BlackBerry phones themselves.

It's still far from a logical fit given Lenovo's current focus on all things Android – the company dished up its latest offering, the jumbo 5.5in Intel-based K900 at CES at the start of the month. On the tablet/PC scene, meanwhile, its Windows legacy is long established.

But with Lenovo among several Chinese smartphone makers openly looking to increase their US smartphone market presence, targeting a company like RIM would certainly be one potential way of doing that.

As Bloomberg points out, though, RIM itself has already shown wariness to expand its operations in China due to sensitivity over security matters. And given existing ripples of discontent between the US and China over things like ZTE's lack of deference to American business sanctions against Iran, and Google's long-running censorship issues with the Beijing government, any deal would have significant obstacles and question marks to overcome.

Definitely one to file in the idle speculation column for the time being.

Read more about: Blackberry OS

Add a comment
5 comments

Pondlife  Jan. 26, 2013 at 18:16

It's still far from a logical fit given Lenovo's current focus on all things Android

It's as logical as anyone else wanting rim, it's not like they could put out iphones or bb atm and little point making anything else to expire on shelves, though are due to waste a bit of cash on a wp8 phone.
Fits with their purchase of ibm pc arm to get more into western pc business, although maybe Nokia would be a closer fit to the ibm figure I guess though less business orientated. And as lenovo already plan wp8 phones..

ipeters44  Jan. 26, 2013 at 20:20

It's good that Lenovo fancies RIM as I think RIM was getting so little interest they had to join various internet dating sites....

JanSt / MOD  Jan. 27, 2013 at 12:58

It's still far from a logical fit given Lenovo's current focus on all things Android

It's as logical as anyone else wanting rim, it's not like they could put out iphones or bb atm and little point making anything else to expire on shelves, though are due to waste a bit of cash on a wp8 phone.
Fits with their purchase of ibm pc arm to get more into western pc business, although maybe Nokia would be a closer fit to the ibm figure I guess though less business orientated. And as lenovo already plan wp8 phones..


Yeah... Lenovo's "current focus" is Windows. Desktop. Tapping a toe into the mobile device market makes Android an easy choice; hardly a "focus"!

And yeah - Nokia would be by far the most obvious candidate imho. The have the hardware
capacity. They have the service capability - Nokia's email is every bit as efficient as RIM's. And with the new server site compression*** in their Ashas etc they are close to what BIS does - at least closer than most. Certainly Lenovo.
(*** though, hey, poor example, as Nokia were caught pants down - they intercept users' browsing data man-in-the-middle style. No encryption. Very very naughty.And everyone using an Asha should shun Nokia's browser until they answer to those findings)

Pondlife  Jan. 27, 2013 at 13:10

Guessing that almost all of those using Asha will be unlikely to be aware of that though and few even know of man in the middle interception.

JanSt / MOD  Jan. 27, 2013 at 13:16

The findings caused quite a bit of attention in India etc where the Ashas are rather popular.
And my scenario was hypothetical, anyways. Nokia aren't buying RIM. But if they did, I'm sure more people would wonder.

Email:

You don't need an account to comment. Just enter your email address. We'll keep it private.

Comment: