Here’s How BlackBerry Made an Unexpected Profit

The new Z10 smartphone from BlackBerry (NASDAQ:BBRY) has carried the company to an unexpected quarterly profit, and it seems that the phone is doing what it was intended to do: lift the company from the slump that it has been experiencing for the past several years, and put BlackBerry back on the cutting edge.

Revenue was still down well below previous year levels, however. Quarterly revenue fell to $2.68 billion, from $4.2 billion in the same quarter last year. The Waterloo, Ontario-based company announced that it moved 1 million Z10s in the fourth quarter, and approximately six million devices total for the period.

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Net income reached $98 million, compared with a loss of $125 million the year earlier. That’s a $0.19 gain and a $0.24 loss on a per share basis, respectively. Analysts had been expecting losses of about $0.10 per share.

“We have implemented numerous changes at BlackBerry over the past year and those changes have resulted in the company returning to profitability,” CEO Thorsten Heins said in the statement. “With the launch of BlackBerry 10, we have introduced the newest and what we believe to be the most innovative mobile computing platform in the market today”…

Although shares dipped initially in pre-market trading to -1.1 percent, by 8:20 AM EST stock had rebounded ever so slightly, and was sitting up $0.02 per share, or 0.16 percent, although it hovered on both sides of even.

BlackBerry, which has been running at a loss recently, said it hopes to reach the break even threshold in the first quarter of the new fiscal year. The company is basing that assertion on a lower cost base, more efficient supply chain, and its improved hardware margins, according to Reuters. Heins’s plan also involves cutting $1 billion in expenses, layoffs of over 5,000 employees, and manufacturing site closures, and the company’s profit indicates that the measures have been effective.

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While only operating on a fraction of the market share that it used to enjoy, BlackBerry has a lot of ground to make up before it can match the performance it enjoyed before other smartphones, like Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) iPhone, stormed the market, took advantage of BlackBerry’s dated system and pushed it out of the ring. Since that time, BlackBerry has been watching the fight from the sidelines, as iOS and Android have been slugging it out for market dominance.

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