America's Only BlackBerry Store is in Benzinga's Backyard
Roughly six miles away from Benzinga's Southfield, MI office is a little-known retail outlet from Research in Motion (NASDAQ: RIMM), one of the biggest players in smartphone manufacturing.
Built by Wireless Giant in 2007, the BlackBerry Store is located in Farmington Hills, MI. Nestled in between a host of competing stores from Sprint (NYSE: S) and AT&T (NYSE: T), as well as a Best Buy (NYSE: BBY) that is only footsteps away, the lone BlackBerry store was recently profiled in the Wall Street Journal and the Detroit News.
According to the Wall Street Journal, Wireless Giant proposed the BlackBerry store concept to Research in Motion as part of a "broad retail plan." At the time, the two companies evaluated plans for 100 different retail outlets. But Research in Motion did not anticipate the rise of Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) and Google (NASDAQ: GOOG), whose mobile operating systems were about to change the face of the cellular industry.
Last week, analysts hammered the BlackBerry maker for delaying its long-awaited BB10 software update until 2013.
"With BB10 now delayed to 1Q-CY13, we're concerned the North America subscriber base could be irreparably harmed and that international markets could follow," Oppenheimer wrote in a report last week. "The delay also emphasizes that execution issues remain, and we're cautious of expecting much improvement with ~30% of the workforce (5,000 from 16,500) to be cut over the next several quarters."
In April, Wireless Giant President Isaac Hanna told the Wall Street Journal that while the BlackBerry store is struggling, "It continues to be in business." He added that Wireless Giant, which is headquartered in Madison Heights, MI, hoped that "some great new [BlackBerry] products" would help the store.
Now that BB10 has been delayed, Hanna is going to have to wait a little longer for that S.O.S. to come through.
Follow me @LouisBedigianBZ
© 2014 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment advice. All rights reserved.