IBM’s “Informal” Interest Boosts RIM’s Shares

by Jordan Richardson on August 13, 2012

After news that IBM might be interested in acquiring Research In Motion’s beleaguered enterprise services business, shares in the Waterloo company rose more than six percent.

The news came down on Friday.

According to reports from Bloomberg, IBM has approached RIM about acquiring the enterprise division. It was an “informal approach” and there are no reports of significant talks between the two companies. At this point and time, it is safest to consider this a rumour.

RIM has yet to receive any formal offers for any part of its business and did not provide comment on the IBM story. IBM was also mum.

The interesting thing about this is how the shares reacted on the mere mention of the story. They closed Friday with a gain of 50 cents, up six and a half percent to a total of $8.22 on the Toronto exchange.

RIM has constantly insisted that its shareholders will be rewarded for their patience, but it seems like that’s asking a lot. The company delayed BlackBerry 10 products again and has presented dismal financial reports. They’ve shifted the executives around somewhat, too, but little seems to be restoring investor confidence.

The rise in share prices is good news, at least somewhat, for RIM. They also received good news Wednesday when a judge overturned a patent verdict involving Mformation Technologies and RIM. The verdict was initially in favour of Mformation to the tune of $147.2 million, but the judge determined that RIM had no infringed on any patents after all.

So now, RIM will look ahead. Rumours of a takeover, even in part, seem to have boosted its shares for the time being. But the stock market is notoriously fickle, generating wild leaps and bounds based on little more than conjecture. RIM is by no means rescued or even on an upward swing here.

What this does mean is that the market reacts positively to news of a RIM takeover. The company giving up its reins to another seems to buoy fortunes somewhat, which means the recipe for a turnaround may lie in some sort of alignment with another tech giant.

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