Research In Motion Ltd. (RIM), which has lost 95 percent of its market value since 2008, is selling one of its two business jets under a plan to save $1 billion in operating costs, two people with knowledge of the matter told Bloomberg.
The jet sale is part of a plan aimed at saving RIM $1 billion in annual operating expenses that also includes slashing 5,000 jobs from company payrolls. Some RIM employees are also being asked to work six days a week and forfeit vacation time. Bloomberg calculates that the corporate jet RIM is trying to sell will save the company only around $2.1 million in operating costs, although Bill de Decker, the founder of business jet consulting firm Conklin & de Decker, tells Bloomberg that selling off such corporate assets are necessary to keep employee morale high in the midst of job cuts. “With corporate aviation, the symbolism far outweighs the dollars,” he said.
“We’re looking at options with both our aircraft costs and finding ways to reduce our travel while still making sure we keep in close contact with our partners around the world,” Waterloo, Ontario-based RIM said in a statement in response to inquiries from Bloomberg. “It’s all part of the effort to find ways to reduce costs and drive efficiencies that Thorsten Heins has talked about.”