(NASDAQ:BBRY) once boasted a full 50% of the smartphone market share. Now, with less than 4% of the US market share, the company is struggling to get by, and several offers to take the company private are now on the table. A good amount of BlackBerry's misfortune can be attributed to the rise of Apple
(NASDAQ:AAPL). In 2007, BlackBerry incorrectly assumed that it could compete with the new paradigm of smartphones without changing its product or business model. While Google's
(NASDAQ:GOOG) Android came to prominence and Samsung
(OTCMKTS:SSNLF) became a much strong player, BlackBerry's assumption was proven woefully wrong.
Apple's headquarters in Cupertino, California.
Now Apple is adding insult to BlackBerry's injury by poaching its employees. According to AllThingsD, Apple has begun contacting BlackBerry staff via the professional social network LinkedIn
(NYSE:LNKD), inviting them to recruitment events in Cambridge, Ontario, a mere 15 miles away from BlackBerry's Waterloo headquarters. The invitations are targeted at engineering and operations talent at the company, and most advertised positions are located in Apple's headquarters in Cupertino, California. In the invitations, Apple says that "relocation and immigration assistance will be provided for candidates that are hired, as needed." According to AllThingsD's John Paczkowski, the events have been well-attended.
News of the LinkedIn poaching follows BlackBerry's announcement in September that it would be letting go of 4,500 employees in anticipation of a $995 million loss for the second fiscal quarter. In that sense, perhaps Apple is doing BlackBerry a favor by taking employees off of its hands.
Follow me on Twitter: @JoshWolonick and @Minyanville.
No positions in stocks mentioned.