Struggling Canadian smartphone maker BlackBerry might be trying hard to reposition itself better in the global handset market, but its operations in India seem to have taken a hit, as exodus at the top as well as lower levels has shrunk its employee count by three-fourths in the country.

The number of employees working for BlackBerry in India has now been reduced to nearly 15 compared to 70 people last year, according to sources close to the developments.

"It's been a tough ride for all those in the company. People are moving on for better career options," a source told The Economic Times.

BlackBerry's head of India operations Sunil Lalvani, who resigned from his job in June, has now moved to Qualcomm's India unit. Following his exit, Matthew Tonkin, vice-president, carrier sales and distribution, APAC region, is overseeing the India operations on an interim basis.

Advait Vaidya, head of product management at BlackBerry, has also quit after a long association with the company. Sameer Bhatia, director of sales and distribution for India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh, left the company in June and now he is the head of retail branding at Seagate Technology.

Similarly, Manoj Khilani, head of enterprise marketing, quit the company in January to lead marketing and communications division at Kronos, according to his LinkedIn profile.

Varghese Thomas, BlackBerry's director of corporate communications and social media (India & SAARC Region) too resigned from his post recently, sources said.

"As BlackBerry moves into the next stage of its turnaround, we remain focused on capitalising on growth opportunities while driving toward sustainable profitability across all businesses. This includes recruiting in those areas of our business that will drive growth in India," said a BlackBerry spokesperson.

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