Well, the stock market doesn’t seem to be impressed with Research In Motion’s leadership change, as RIM’s stock ($RIMM) fell 8.59% to close at $15.56 today. This was the first business day since the news came out that former COO Thorston Heins would be replacing former co-CEOs Jim Balsillie and Mike Lazaridis.
Balsillie and Lazaridis also gave up their positions as co-Chairmen of the Board as we reported at the beginning of January. In their place is a single Chairman: Barbara Stymiest. RIM has named Mike Lazaridis as new Vice Charman of the Board, while Jim Balsillie will stay at the company as a director.
The news of RIM’s new CEO has been met overall with lukewarm reception. Maybe we just need to give this guy a chance. Expectations are very high, however, with RIM’s reputation in the mobile space shrinking every day. After failing to keep up with the likes of iOS and Android and releasing the PlayBook, a sad excuse for a tablet, the company should be banking on Heins for a major turnaround in 2012.
RIM has seen a steady decline over the past year in its stock price. Its 52-week high was achieved in February 2011 at $70.54, but today’s closing price of $15.56 is dangerously close to the 52-week low of $12.45. The stock is now trading during market After Hours at $15.55.