BlackBerry says more executives plan to leave Canadian smartphone maker

TORONTO – More BlackBerry (TSX:BB) executives are headed for the door under sweeping changes from its new leader.

Three employees who held top roles are leaving their jobs, as interim chief executive John Chen reshapes the money-losing Canadian technology company.

The smartphone maker says Rick Costanzo, executive vice-president of global sales, and Chris Wormald, vice-president of strategic alliances, will leave their roles.

Both executives played roles in BlackBerry’s mainstream popularity.

Since Chen joined the company last month, he has started a dramatic overhaul of its executive ranks, with both the chief operating officer and chief marketing officer leaving their roles.

Chief financial officer Brian Bidulka was also replaced.

Costanzo began with the company in 1999 and held various positions. Most recently he managed the team responsible for the international presence of the BlackBerry smartphone.

Wormald started at BlackBerry in 2000. He oversaw licensing and acquisitions, and was previously part of a small team that helped develop BlackBerry Messenger, according to his LinkedIn profile.

On top of that, another high-ranking employee has landed a job at public relations company Hill and Knowlton.

A press release from the firm said Mark Cameron, who was BlackBerry’s director of global public policy, has joined their team. BlackBerry did not immediately confirm whether he had left his role.

Cameron began working at BlackBerry in 2011 and oversaw the smartphones sales to the government and public sectors.

BlackBerry will report its third-quarter financial results on Friday. More details are expected to be revealed on how Chen plans to rescue the company, which has struggled in the highly competitive smartphone industry.

Chen took over from ousted CEO Thorsten Heins amid a plan to lay off 40 per cent of BlackBerry’s staff, or about 4,500 employees.


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