BlackBerry COO, CMO leave company

Two senior executives of BlackBerry Ltd. are leaving the company and another one is being replaced as part of a major shakeup of the troubled Canadian smart phone maker.

Kristian Tear, chief operating officer of BlackBerry and Frank Boulben, the company’s chief marketing officer, will exit the company while Brian Bidulka, chief financial officer, is being replaced, according to a statement released by the company today.

Kristian Tear
Kristian Tear

Tear and Boulben were hired by former BlackBerry CEO, Thorsten Heins in May 2012.

James Yersh, who has worked for BlackBerry since 2008 as senior vice president and as head of compliance, will replaced Bidukha.

Bidulka will remain in the company as special advisor to the CEO for the remainder of the fiscal year to assist with the transition.

In a statement today, John Chen, the company’s new CEO, thanked the outgoing executives for their services and attempted to put a positive spin on BlackBerry’s current situation.

“BlackBerry has a strong cash position and continues, by a significant margin, to be the top provider of trusted and secure mobile device management solutions to enterprise customers around the world,” he said.

Chen, who was named as a replacement to Heins earlier this month, also gave a statement pointing to BlackBerry’s intended direction on leveraging its mobile messaging system and its QNX operating systems.

Frank Boulben
Frank Boulben

“Building on this core strength, and in conjunction with these management changes, I wil continue to align my senior management team and organizational structure and refine the company’s strategy to ensure we deliver the best devices, mobile security and device management through BES 10, provide multi-platform messaging solutions with BBM and expand adoption of the QNX embedded systems.”

BlackBerry also announced today that Roger Martin, a board member since 2007, has resigned.

“Our Board has benefitted from Roger’s expertise and insights over the past six years and we wish him the best,” said Barbara Stymiest, board member and former chair of thebBoard.

James Yersh has more than 15 years of experience in the technology and telecommunications industries.

Yersh previously served as the senior vice president, controller and head of compliance for BlackBerry. Prior to joining BlackBerry in 2008, he held various senior positions at Cognos Inc. and Deloitte.


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Nestor E. Arellano
Nestor E. Arellano
Toronto-based journalist specializing in technology and business news. Blogs and tweets on the latest tech trends and gadgets.

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