Research In Motion Ltd., once Canada’s largest company by market value, has fallen below the country’s biggest coffee and doughnut chain after the BlackBerry smartphone maker’s latest share slide.
The CHART OF THE DAY shows that RIM’s market value has plunged to C$7.2 billion ($6.9 billion) from a record C$84.5 billion in 2008. Tim Hortons Inc., which runs contests asking customers to “roll up the rim” of their coffee cups in search of prizes, has now rolled up to RIM’s market value. Tim Hortons is worth C$7.8 billion after rallying 20 percent this year.
“The company has been whittled down to levels we wouldn’t have contemplated even less than a year ago,” Greg Eckel, a money manager with Morgan Meighen & Associates Ltd. in Toronto, said in a telephone interview, referring to RIM. “It’s just a massive failure.” His firm manages about C$1 billion.
RIM’s stock price has dropped to levels last seen in 2003 after its flagship BlackBerry smartphone lost market share to Apple Inc.’s iPhone and handsets based on Google Inc.’s Android software. The stock slumped today after RIM said a new generation of BlackBerrys designed to fuel a comeback won’t be out until late in 2012.
After surpassing Royal Bank of Canada to become the country’s most-valuable company three years ago, Waterloo, Ontario-based RIM has dropped to 58th among companies in the Standard & Poor’s/TSX Composite Index. Companies now bigger by market value include grocer Loblaw Cos., pharmacy chain Shoppers Drug Mart Corp. and Saputo Inc., Canada’s largest cheese producer.
Oakville, Ontario-based Tim Hortons, named after a former National Hockey League defenseman with the Toronto Maple Leafs, began an expansion into the U.S. last year. Third-quarter sales at existing U.S. stores climbed 6.3 percent, eclipsing a 4.7 percent gain at its Canadian outlets.