RIM Shareholder Jarislowsky Adds to Call for Chairman, CEO Split

Billionaire Stephen Jarislowsky, one of Research In Motion Ltd. (RIMM)’s largest shareholders, added his name to the call for the BlackBerry smartphone maker to split the roles of chairman and chief executive officer.

“You should not have these two people at both positions because they have worked together all their lives and they are basically the same person, from point of view of policy,” Stephen Jarislowsky, chairman of Jarislowsky Fraser Ltd., said today in an interview.

The Montreal-based investment firm, which was the company’s sixth-biggest investor with 10.2 million shares of RIM at the end of the first quarter, has sold more than half its stake, he said.

Mike Lazaridis, who invented the BlackBerry to handle mobile e-mail, has shared the role of CEO with Jim Balsillie since 1992 and they are also both co-chairmen.

To contact the reporter on this story: Hugo Miller in Toronto at hugomiller@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Peter Elstrom at pelstrom@bloomberg.net

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