Yota Devices Entering Canada, Could Threaten BlackBerry Ltd (BBRY)

BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY) (TSE:BB)’s turnaround efforts may have a new obstacle coming their way soon. The Chief Executive Officer of the Moscow-based smartphone maker, Yota devices has recently informed of his plans of relocating the headquarters of the company to either Toronto or Waterloo by the end of current year.

Ex-BlackBerry employees targeted

BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY) (TSE:BB) has taken some major restructuring steps and as a part of it, has laid off a large pool of talented employees in Canada as it seeks cutting down on costs. The knowledge and expertise in the handset making of these employees will help Yota Devices build a space for itself in Canada, said the CEO Vlad Martynov.

“Among those people there are brilliant engineers,” said Mr. Martynov during an interview to Financial Post, in Toronto on Wednesday.”What we do is we pick up those engineers and bring them to the company.”

The benefits of relocating to Canada are many and include costs, tax benefits and government support, on top of the potential recruitment opportunity, and these have led the company choose it as the preferred location for its headquarters over the U.S.

A unique device

An Android based smartphone with screens on both the sides is the flagship unit of Yota Devices. The device has one LCD touch screen on the front and an e-reader style screen on the back, which remains on at all times. This dual-screen design grabbed a lot of attention at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas in 2013.

“Among a parade of copycat phablets and phones here at CES, the dual-screen Yotaphone is doing something genuinely new and fresh. It looks silly at first, but it becomes more compelling the longer you use it,” wrote PC Mag at the time.

This device will become a potential threat for all the existing marker leaders. BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY) is having the hardest time of all as its already struggling to win over a reasonable share of the smartphone market. In the last three years, BlackBerry has shed nearly 60% of its workforce for the purpose of reinventing itself. While BlackBerry used to be the market leader things have changed drastically over the past four years with Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s iPhone and numerous and devices on Google’s Android OS gaining traction.