BlackBerry appoints new marketing chief to drive growth

BlackBerry, the ailing mobile phone company, has made two senior appointments to drive the company's strategy, marketing and operations, as the company attempts to return to its business "roots".

BlackBerry: announces new hires
BlackBerry: announces new hires

Mark Wilson will join BlackBerry in January as the senior vice president of marketing, with the aim to build brand preference and drive integrated marketing at the company.

He joins from his current position of chief marketing officer at Avaya, and his previous experience includes senior roles at SyBase, AT&T and KPMG.

The second appointment is James S Mackey who joins BlackBerry as the executive vice president of corporate development and strategic planning, responsible for executing corporate strategies that drive business growth. His previous experience includes senior roles at Open Text Corp and SAP.

The appointments come as BlackBerry strives to turn its business around following the collapse of its sale to a private equity firm in November.

Last week, BlackBerry published an open letter from interim chief executive John Chen to its customers, pledging to return to its "roots" by offering "enterprise grade, end-to-end mobile solutions".

It claimed "reports of [the brand’s death] are greatly exaggerated," arguing that the company is "very much alive".

Speaking on the appointment of Wilson and Mackey, Chen said: "I have worked extensively with both of them in the past, have the utmost respect for their experience and accomplishments, and we have developed close and trusted relationships with each other that will enable us to cohesively manage the changes required to reshape BlackBerry."

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