Lively debate going on this morning regarding whether it’s time for $RIMM to find a buyer, as Dan Frommer argues that they have become an enterprise dinosaur in an increasingly consumer-driven market. So should they sell?
As I argued here recently, $GOOG is rapidly ascending and $AAPL has quickly become the leader in attention if not (yet) market share. The battle between those two companies will do more damage to the secondary participants – of which $RIMM is one (along with $MSFT, $NOK and the hapless $PALM).
So the answer is yes – but the bigger question is who the buyer would be.
An acquisition and/or merger with $MSFT or $NOK would simply combine two struggling companies with large installed bases but wholly incompatible platforms. $MSFT has already been down that road and it’s been a bumpy ride so far.
$NOK makes absolutely gorgeous hardware but is burdened with a rapidly-aging software infrastructure that nobody wants to write for anymore.
The most likely suitor – and the one that makes the most sense in my view – is the one for whom the still growing smartphone market is virgin territory – and who has the financial and management resources to do the deal, to straighten out $RIMM’s woes, and to salvage and turn around their assets before it’s too late.
A company for whom mobile phones could be ‘The Next Hill’.
To me, that is one company – and one company only.