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Heins: Blackberry is in ‘capable hands’

Departing Blackberry CEO says he will be “cheering from the sidelines” after handing over the reins to interim CEO John Chen.

RIM CEO Thorsten Heins Speaks To Blackberry Conference In San Jose

Thorsten Heins is leaving Blackberry on a positive note, according to a letter to the company’s employees recently published by The Wall Street Journal.

“Today I bid farewell to this great company, but leave with the confidence of knowing that BlackBerry’s future is in your capable hands,” Heins wrote. “Together, we have accomplished a great deal over the past six years, and I thank you for your loyalty and dedication along the way.”

“You can continue to count me as BlackBerry’s biggest fan,” Heins continued in the letter.

Perhaps some of Heins’ enthusiasm for his beleaguered former employer comes from the fact that upon departing the company he will earn $22 million, according to reports citing securities filings.

While Heins’ replacement isn’t a recognizable name, to investors of the once troubled Sybase he is nothing short of a messiah. When John Chen stepped in as Sybase’s chief executive in 1998, the company was worth $362 million and had been through rounds of painful layoffs. After 13-years at the helm Chen’s restructuring brought Sybase’s valuation into the $5 billion range, partially due to early adoption of now fast-growing services like analytics and mobile.

Late Wednesday Blackberry announced it had received another $1 billion in debt financing from Qatar’s sovereign wealth fund. With this additional financing Blackberry has time, and it will be interesting to see what Chen does with it.

Source: The Wall Street Journal

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