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Bleak BlackBerry Q2 results highlight nearly $1 billion in unsold Z10 phones

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BlackBerry Z10
BlackBerry Z10

It's no secret: BlackBerry is in bad shape. The company released its earnings for Q2 today, and the rough results directly follow the bleak guidance the Canadian firm offered last week when it announced 4,500 layoffs and a nearly $1 billion loss over the quarter. The final number revealed today is a $965 million loss, which is mainly accounted for by the awful sales of the Z10, the first phone to run BlackBerry 10. Unsold Z10s have forced the company to take "a primarily non-cash, pre-tax charge against inventory and supply commitments of approximately $934 million" in what it's calling the "Z10 Inventory Charge" — words that few will likely want to utter in Waterloo. In terms of revenue, the company reported $1.6 billion for the quarter, a 45 percent drop from a year ago and a 49 percent drop from last quarter. It shipped 3.7 million smartphones over the quarter, fewer than half of which ran BlackBerry 10.

CEO Thorsten Heins said in a statement that "We are very disappointed with our operational and financial results this quarter and have announced a series of major changes to address the competitive hardware environment and our cost structure." Primarily, those changes involve moving the company's business away from consumer smartphones: it plans to cut its portfolio down to four devices while it "refocus our offering on our end-to-end solution of hardware, software and services for enterprises and the productive, professional end user." In the meantime, the company is also looking into a sale to add some cash to its operations: Canadian investment company Fairfax put in a $4.7 billion buyout offer earlier this week.