BlackBerry names new COO

BlackBerry names new COO

BlackBerry has announced that it has appointed Marty Beard as its new chief operations officer (COO).

Mr Beard, who will be responsible for several different areas of the company, joins the Canadian firm having served as chief executive officer at the cLiveOps cloud customer service company.

Prior to that role, he held a number of positions at Sybase, including senior vice president of marketing.

He is not the first ex-employee of Sybase to join BlackBerry, with chief executive officer John Chen himself a Sybase alumni.

BB10 app development, customer care, and marketing are among the main areas that will fall under Mr Beard's responsibilities.

"BlackBerry continues to attract top talent to the company. Marty brings extensive experience in operations, marketing and serving customers through the best technologies and processes available," commented Mr Chen.

He replaces the outgoing Kristian Tear, who left the company just three weeks after Mr Chen's arrival as part of a substantial corporate shake-up that also saw Frank Boulben, the chief marketing officer, and Biran Bidulka, the chief financial officer depart.

A number of experts within the industry have now started to speculate on how much of a benefit it will be for BlackBerry to be guided by a team based around a similar background, especially as it looks to change the aim of the business to place a greater focus on enterprise customers.

The appointment of Mr Beard comes on the back of the firm releasing details of its latest smartphone – the BlackBerry Passport.

The new model has already generated a large amount of discussion due to its 4.5 inch screen, as well as the inclusion of the firm's traditional QWERTY keyboard.

Blackberry's new strategy of appealing to more business customers has been reflected in the design, which aims to make it easier to view documents.