BlackBerry rebuilds key talent Jenga tower with former HTC executive

Summary:Former HTC executive jumps to BlackBerry, despite more than $5 billion in losses over two quarters.

Image: CNET

BlackBerry's turnaround efforts are beginning to come together, thanks to a crucial new hire.

The Waterloo, Ontario-based smartphone maker announced on Monday that former HTC executive Ron Louks will join the company as its new Devices and Emerging Solutions unit present.

Louks will focus on "BlackBerry's long-term product road map, including hardware, software, and design, as well as the company's joint development efforts," according to his direct boss John Chen, the company's interim chief executive.

Citing Louks' many hours spent with customers, carriers, and partners, Chen said: "On our path to return BlackBerry to profitability, nothing is more important than remaining deeply connected to our customers and designing and delivering secure products that exceed their expectations."

Louks previously served as the chief executive for The OpenNMS Group, an open-source network management platform company, as well as chief technology for Sony Ericsson. 

It's good news for BlackBerry, which has also suffered in recent quarters — notably a near-$1 billion loss in the second quarter, and a $4.4 billion loss in the following third quarter.

BlackBerry's push back into the mobile market space includes other recent hires, notably as former SAP executive John Sims as the head of the company's Global Enterprise Services division, which remains BlackBerry's bread and butter.

Correction at 1:25 p.m. ET: Louks did not come directly from HTC. Both the story and headline have been amended.

Topics: BlackBerry, HTC, Smartphones


Zack Whittaker is a writer-editor for ZDNet, and sister sites CNET and CBS News. He is based in the New York newsroom. His PGP key is: EB6CEEA5.

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