At a WTIA predictions dinner that I moderated a few years ago, Madrona Venture Group’s Matt McIlwain suggested that Microsoft should buy RIM. Now, with stock of the Blackberry maker getting pummeled, the time may finally be here.
RIM’s stock took a nose dive earlier this week, and though it has recovered a bit today it is still trading down nearly 25 percent in the past few days. With a market value of $14 billion, Bloomberg News notes that an acquirer could “pay a 50 percent premium and still buy the BlackBerry maker for a lower multiple than any company in the industry.”
It has been a mighty fall for RIM, which Bloomberg notes boasted a market value of $83 billion just three years ago. Bloomberg suggests that Dell or Microsoft could be possible suitors.
Microsoft is in a serious game of catch-up against Apple iOS and Google Android.
Could RIM be the solution?
Of course, RIM utilizes its own mobile operating system, so one challenge would be integrating RIM with the Windows Phone 7 ecosystem. Microsoft got around that issue with Nokia — which had largely relied on the Symbian operating system — by agreeing to make Windows Phone 7 the de facto OS on Nokia mobile devices.
Microsoft has shown an interest in making big bets recently, including the $8.5 billion acquisition of Skype. Could RIM be next?
Previously on GeekWire: IDC cuts 2011 Windows Phone forecast — still thinks Microsoft will be No. 2 worldwide in 2015