BlackBerry's European boss eyes M&A to speed up new strategy

BlackBerry’s European boss eyes M&A to speed up new strategy

21 MAY 2014

BlackBerry needs to move quickly if its renewed focus on the enterprise market is to be a success, with acquisitions likely in the next few months, according to Markus Mueller, managing director of BlackBerry in Europe.

Speaking to Mobile World Live, Mueller said: “The mobile market is probably one of the fastest-developing markets you can think of so in this case it really is the fast company eats the slow company — so time is definitely a decisive factor.”

“You will see BlackBerry doing acquisitions going forwards because of that time factor. Some stuff we develop ourselves, some stuff we acquire – it depends on what is the fastest and best way to market.”

The executive said the company wants to add additional services to its enterprise offerings in order for it to capitalise on its strong enterprise base in Europe.

“We want to go up the stack vertically and upsell additional services on top of our current MDM (mobile device management) solution and the challenge will be to get those services out to the market as soon as possible.”

Referring to the recent announcement that BlackBerry will allow its devices to be managed by services other than BlackBerry Enterprise Server (BES), Mueller said there are a range of business scenarios in which BlackBerry devices could be used, not all including the use of BES.

“There are a lot of reasons why people want to use a BlackBerry. We don’t fear competition but on the other side we don’t want to restrict people from being able to use BlackBerry if they don’t use BES,” Mueller said.

“What we’re pretty much doing is on the software side and also the device side, we are entering the competitive mode,” he added.

Mueller also referred to the stability created by the $1 billion investment secured by BlackBerry in November last year and the subsequent arrival of a new management team, including John Chen as CEO.

“We are now talking about a company with a solid financial background and with a plan. The discussions with our customers are now much more around what’s next rather than will you be around a year from now.”

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Tim Ferguson

Tim joined Mobile World Live in August 2011 and works across all channels, with a particular focus on apps. He came to the GSMA with five years of tech journalism experience, having started his career as a reporter... More

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