Samsung denies interest in Blackberry maker RIM

Korean smartphone maker Samsung has denied it is eyeing Canadian Blackberry maker Research In Motion (RIM) for acquisition

Korean smartphone maker Samsung has denied it is interested in acquiring Canadian firm Research In Motion.

RIM shares rose more than 10% after the Boy Genius Report technology blog linked Samsung to a bid for troubled Blackberry maker Research In Motion (RIM), according to The Telegraph.

The blog cited an unidentified source as saying RIM co-chief executive Jim Balsillie was meeting companies interested in licensing RIM’s software or buying the company, including Samsung.

But Samsung denied the report, issuing a statement saying that it was not interested in buying RIM.

RIM has long been the subject of takeover speculation that has identified Microsoft, Nokia, and Amazon as potential buyers.

Pegged at around $80bn in 2008, RIM has suffered a series of delays, compounded by Android’s rapid rise in mass market popularity. RIM is now valued at around $9bn.

In its third quarter results announcement in December, RIM said it expected sales to drop by up to 18% for its fourth quarter results in March 2012, compared to the same period in 2011. RIM’s third quarter results saw sales fall year-on-year by 6% from $5.2bn (£3.5bn).

Pundits have suggested a takeover by an Android manufacturer could make sense if it were to integrate RIM's enterprise services, such as Blackberry Messenger, into their offering.

RIM has already turned down takeover offers because its founders, Jim Balsillie and fellow RIM co-CEO Mike Lazaridis, want to fix its problems on their own.

But shareholders are pressing for internal change and are calling on Balsillie and Lazaridis to give up their role as co-chairs of the board.

Shareholders responded positively to the news that RIM plans to separate the roles of chairman and chief executive. The announcement earlier this month will mean bringing RIM in line with common North American company practice.

Barbara Stymiest, an independent director who joined the RIM board in 2007, is said to be the frontrunner for the post of chairman, according to reports.

The change is expected to be announced at the end of January, after the committee appointed to review RIM’s corporate governance submits its recommendations.

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