BlackBerry Q3 loss less than anticipated, revenue above estimates

WATERLOO, Ont. -- BlackBerry (TSX:BB) is reporting higher revenue and a smaller loss than analysts were expecting.

The smartphone company's revenue was US$557 million, which is $64 million above the general estimate and up from US$548 million a year ago.

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The company's net loss was US$89 million or 17 cents per share under standard accounting rules. After adjustments, BlackBerry's loss was US$15 million or three cents per share -- far less than estimates.

Analysts projected that BlackBerry would report a loss of 14 cents per share and US$489 million of revenue for the quarter, according to Thomson Reuters.

Chief executive John Chen says the company saw higher revenue across all areas of its focus, including software, and it will increase spending on the launch of the newest BlackBerry smartphone -- the first with an Android operating system.

Initial stock market reaction to the quarterly report was positive, with the pre-market price rising by eight per cent from Thursday's close.

Chen says the new Priv device has been well received since it was launched in November, late in the company's third quarter ended Nov. 28.

"BlackBerry has a solid financial foundation, and we are executing well," Chen said in a statement before a conference call.

"To sustain our current direction, we are stepping up investments to drive continued software growth and the additional Priv launches. I anticipate this will result in sequential revenue growth in our software, hardware and messaging businesses in our software, hardware and messaging businesses in Q4."

Chen has said previously that BlackBerry needs to sell five million phones in the current fiscal year to break even.

BlackBerry stock closed Thursday at US$7.80 on the Nasdaq market, which handles most of the BlackBerry trading volume, and at C$10.89 on the Toronto Stock Exchange.



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