BlackBerry CEO Denies Reports He Would Exit Handset Business – (BBRY)

BlackBerry (BBRY) CEO John Chen has denied reports he would exit the handset business if that portion of the company remains unprofitable in the near future. His new statement comes less than 24 hours after he was quoted in interview with Reuters as saying: “If I cannot make money on handsets, I will not be in the handset business,” adding that the time frame for such a decision was short.

Today, Chen clarified his comments from the interview, claiming they were taken out of context.

In a blog post on Inside BlackBerry, Chen, who took the reigns of the struggling smartphone company in November, reiterated he isn’t selling or getting out of the device business any time soon and that the focus of the firm is to keep trying to make the business profitable.

From IB:

“Yesterday, Reuters published an article that said I would consider selling our Devices business. My comments were taken out of context.

I want to assure you that I have no intention of selling off or abandoning this business any time soon.‎ I know you still love your BlackBerry devices. I love them too and I know they created the foundation of this company. Our focus today is on finding a way to make this business profitable.

BlackBerry is not a handset-only company. We offer an end-to-end solution and devices are an important part of that equation. That’s why we’re complementing our Devices business with other revenue streams from enterprise services and software, to messaging. We’re also investing in emerging solutions such as Machine toMachine technologies that will help to power the backbone of the Internet of Things.

We will do everything in our power to continue to rebuild this business and deliver devices with the iconic keyboard and other features that you have come to expect from this brand.‎

Rest assured, we continue to fight. We have not given up and we are not leaving the Devices business.”

Blackberry shares are down around 12 cents today, trading at $7.85 as of 1:11PM EDT.

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