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Is Barbara Stymiest RIM's Next CEO?

Submitted by on January 3, 2012 – 10:53 am

Rumours have been flying all morning indicating that RIM is edging closer to replacing Co-CEO’s Mike Lazaridis and Jim Balsillie with some new leadership.  According to a press release issued on December 15 issued by Jaguar Financial Corporation, they are proposing that Barbara Stymiest “step up” and “draw upon her experience and cause significant change in corporate governance.” Jaguar has been quite vocal through the last year showing their lack of support for the current management of RIM which is one of the factors that has lead to the stock dropping 75% over the last year, not to mention a lack of innovation in their current product set.

Today, the company also announced another significant drop in the price of their tablet that was launched in 2010, the Blackberry Playbook, which continues to be a money losing product for the Waterloo-based company.

Is Barbara Stymiest The Right Fit For RIM?

Based on her biro, Barbara is the current Group Head of Strategy, Treasury & Corporate Services at Royal Bank of Canada.
“Ms. Stymiest is responsible at Royal Bank of Canada for its strategic development as well as all corporate functions including risk management, finance and treasury. She is responsible at Liberty Life Insurance Co. for directing enterprise strategy, as well as all corporate functions including risk management, finance, human resources and treasury. Previously, she served as the Chief Executive Officer of TMX Group Inc. (F/k/a TSX Group Inc.), until October 31, 2004.  Prior to joining Toronto Stock Exchange, Ms. Stymiest served as Executive Vice President, and Chief Financial Officer of Bank of Montreal’s investment banking division. She served as Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of BMO Nesbitt Burns and Partner of Ernst & Young LLP. She has been Director at Research In Motion Ltd. since March 2007.”

Boyd Erman over at the Globe and Mail says “A new chair(wo)man for RIM? About time” but if being a woman is reason enough to run a company then I think my mother should be the next CEO of Google!

Maybe we’re missing something but she is not a technology person, and RIM is a technology-based company, not a financial services company, sorry Barbaba but you do not get our vote. Her only real time to the organization is that she’s been a board member since 2007, but again there has to be more than just sitting around a table to earn a seat to lead the table.



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Dave Forde

Dave “The Connector” Forde has been involved in the technology industry across Canada for over 10 years in sales and marketing roles, he launched PR In Canada, and on Profectio.

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