BBRY and Investors See Red on Second-Quarter Results

NEW YORK (TheStreet) - Mere days after the unveiling of the Z30 smartphone failed to elicit market excitement, BlackBerry  (BBRYreleased its fiscal second-quarter results a week earlier than scheduled. The numbers further demonstrate the challenges the beleaguered tech company has faced in recent months.

For the quarter ended August 30, BlackBerry expects revenue of $1.6 billion, well below the expected $3.06 billion. The company will recognize a $950 to $995 million operating loss, attributing much of this to fierce competition in the smartphone market. BlackBerry devices have suffered at the hands of more dominant smartphone manufacturers such as Apple (AAPL), Google  (GOOG) and Microsoft  (MSFT) over the past few years.

Though rumors of downsizing have been circulating since early this week, BlackBerry confirmed it will cut 40% of its workforce by year-end. The layoffs enforced across all departments will affect around 4,500 employees.

In the company's press release, President and CEO Thorsten Heins said, "We are implementing the difficult, but necessary, operational changes announced today to address our position in a maturing and more competitive industry."

Going forward, he says the company will focus on the enterprise and professional user segments. "This puts us squarely on target with the customers that helped build BlackBerry into the leading brand today," he said.

BlackBerry has enlisted PricewaterhouseCoopers to assist in the evaluation of potential buyers to lift the company out of the doldrums, according to Bloomberg. In August, BlackBerry confirmed it was formulating strategies to resuscitate the company, including its possible sale to an external party.

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