RIM Hires Law Firm to Help Restructure

by Jordan Richardson on April 23, 2012

Research In Motion is hoping to pull out of its seemingly incessant slump by shuffling the deck and they’ve hired a law firm to help them do it.

The Waterloo-based company hired Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy LLP to help iron out a strategy for restructuring that could include the selling of assets and some different business approaches. RIM is also considering seeking out new joint ventures and patent licensing opportunities to help boost revenue.

RIM’s board is looking to BlackBerry 10 to help produce some cash, of course, but there’s also hoping to find money under the couch cushions of deals with various telecommunications carriers. The company is looking to find money just about anywhere they can as they face continued losses to market leaders like Apple and Android-running smartphones.

In its most recent quarter, RIM posted a $125 million loss and wrote down inventories. The PlayBook has given the corporation pause, as it has yet to materialize into a force to be reckoned with. After moving some chairs around at the top, RIM has to be hoping that the hiring of legal counsel can help inject, at the very least, some ideas in the company’s bloodstream.

As Jeff reported a few days ago, RIM was weighing “strategic options” and it was thought that they were going to hire a financial advisor. But now, it doesn’t look like the company is going to go with a fiscal advisor unless it actually moves to sell off assets or if there’s something along the lines of takeover interest.

RIM has worked with Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy LLP before. They also currently retain the services of Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP and the consulting firm Monitor Group to aid in strategic decision-making.

With the hiring of the firm, it stands to reason that RIM may be considering the implementation, at least in part, of one of former co-CEO Jim Balsillie’s plans to boost revenue. According to Reuters, Balsillie had a plan that included a “carrier cloud” that would take on Apple’s iCloud. Talks with several telecommunications firms about the particulars of Balsillie’s plans were said to have been going on as recently as January at the Consumer Electronics Show, but the board has apparently backed off after cost concerns.

It’s possible that legal counsel could advise the company to move on some of these plans, although nothing is certain. It does seem that RIM is moving away from talks of selling off assets and toward thoughts of making an effort to restructure and reconsider some key components. Call it a last ditch effort, but it looks like one of Canada’s last remaining tech giants is taking another kick at the can.

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Written by: Jordan Richardson. www.digitcom.ca. Follow TheTelecomBlog.com by: RSSTwitterFacebook, or YouTube.

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