Remember the old days, when BlackBerry (NYSE:BB) was mostly known for making phones with little keypads? Back then, before the Great Recession, BB stock seemed like a sure-fire long-term winner.
Times have changed since then, and so has the technology. The smartphone revolution hit BlackBerry at around the same time as the financial crisis — a one-two punch that left the company’s investors reeling.
Great companies can rise from adversity, however, and transform themselves when required. Folks who held on to BB stock through the tough times might actually prevail in the end as BlackBerry now transitions into fresh, future-facing market segments.
Change isn’t easy, but in this case it’s an absolute necessity. Thankfully, there are signs that BlackBerry’s worst days may be over and a new, tech-driven chapter can begin.
BB Stock at a Glance
As I alluded to earlier, BB stock was a high flyer with tons of trading volume back in the early 2000’s. However, BlackBerry’s leadership position in the mobile phone market dwindled as the company failed to adapt by adding a touchscreen display.
As BlackBerry’s market share collapsed, so did the BB stock price. By early 2021, the stock wasn’t in the triple digits or even the double digits — instead, it was down to $6.50.
Then, something strangle and possibly miraculous happened. Traders on Reddit and other social media platforms started to target certain “underdog stocks” for a short squeeze. BlackBerry was certainly an underdog by that time, and BB stock was a perfect candidate because of its low price.
Astoundingly, the buyers/squeezers sent the share price up to a 52-week high of $28.77 on Jan. 27. After a subsequent slide to $8, there was another possible short squeeze when the BlackBerry share price rallied to $16 in June.
By Sept. 22, BB stock was back down to $9.56 — a disappointing outcome, no doubt. Yet, something was brewing in after-hours trading on that day. Post-market traders were pushing the share price up 7%, to $10.23.
What was going on, exactly?
A Loss, But Also a Beat
So, here’s what happened. BlackBerry had just released its fiscal second-quarter data, and there was a surprise in the mix.
To begin, BlackBerry reported a net loss of $144 million, which equates to 25 cents per share.
That doesn’t sound like a reason to celebrate, right? Especially when we compare this result to the milder net loss of $23 million, or 4 cents per share, from the year-ago quarter.
Consider this, though: the Wall Street consensus estimate called for a loss of 7 cents per share on revenue of $166.8 million.
So BlackBerry had a loss and a beat at the same time. Also notable, the company affirmed that BlackBerry’s president, Tom Eacobacci, plans to leave the company on Oct. 29, to be replaced by John Giamatteo.
Delivering In Two Segments
With these results, BlackBerry Executive Chairman and CEO John Chen didn’t hesitate to accentuate the positive aspects.
Chen proudly observed that revenue for all of BlackBerry’s businesses beat expectations in 2021’s second fiscal quarter.
Fair enough, now we can drill down to what specifically drove the company’s Street-beating results. “The Cyber Security business unit delivered robust sequential billings and revenue growth and the IoT [Internet of Things] business unit performed well in the face of global chip shortage pressures,” Chen clarified.
This, I believe, is proof positive that BlackBerry is successfully pivoting into future-facing market segments.
Notably, the company generated $40 million in IoT revenue and $120 million in cybersecurity revenue during the reported quarter.
This actually makes perfect sense, given the current market environment.
Businesses and government organizations are shifting to the cloud as they continue to support hybrid work — and BlackBerry’s cybersecurity and IoT businesses seem to benefit from this change.
You probably won’t see too many phones with little keypads anymore, but BlackBerry is still around and they’re surprisingly busy lately.
It’s a whole new company, really. The BlackBerry of today is still tech-focused, but the revenues are coming from different segments.
As for BB stock, the meme-stock traders might pump it and forget it again at some point.
That’s not the main concern of folks who truly believe in BlackBerry’s updated business model, though. For them, it’s all about adapting and changing for the better.
On the date of publication, neither Louis Navellier nor the InvestorPlace Research Staff member primarily responsible for this article held (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article.
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