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By | Paul Kunert 28th May 2012 10:33

'6,000 RIM jobs at risk' of a pink slip

Heins source claims layoffs as early as June

BlackBerry maker Research In Motion is threatening to axe thousands of its workers, according to reports.

The ailing mobe firm shed co-CEOs Jim Balsillie and Mike Lazaridis in January after a slump in sales, and replaced the pair with Thorsten Heins. More recently, head of global sales Patrick Spence departed.

According to loquacious sources, RIM is now gearing up for a massive global restructuring effort in the next couple of weeks that will result in 2,000 workers losing their jobs, The Globe and Mail writes.

However, Reuters reckons the cuts could come as early as 1 June, and may be even deeper: potentially 6,000 roles could get their pink slips across legal, marketing, sales, operations and HR divisions.

RIM employs about 16,500 people at present, whereas it had 20,000 on the books at its peak.

Last summer RIM laid off 2,000 staff amid a profit warning as it struggled to push out products on time and felt continued pressure from Apple's iPhone, which has bitten chunks out of BlackBerry's market share.

The PlayBook tablet also failed to ignite punters' interest before it received an HP TouchPad style price slash, which finally tempted folk to open up their wallets.

RIM closed off fiscal 2012, ended 3 March, on a low with Q4 sales slumping 19 per cent to $4.2bn and the company recording a net loss of $125m compared to a profit of $265m in the same three months a year earlier.

At the time, Heins said he expected "significant" business challenges in the coming quarters – and it seems he was right. The mobe maker did not respond for comment. ®

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