By Ed Oswald | Saturday, April 24, 2010 at 12:08 pm
It seems as if these days, every story I’m writing on Palm is a negative one, and this one is no different. With the potential list of suitors for the ailing company dwindling, its list of distributors shrinking, and the company quickly burning through what money it has left, executives are getting restless.
In the last week alone, the company has lost two of its high-level executives, software senior vice president Michael Abbott (who went to Twitter), and now carrier marketing vice president Caitlin Spaan, one of the company’s most tenured employees. Not exactly sure here, but this unease at the executive level could be contributing to the latest rumor.
Erick Schonfeld at TechCrunch reports on an “imminent” management shuffle and restructuring which may end up with the dismissal of Jon Rubinstein as the company’s CEO. Rubinstein was brought over from Apple to work on development of Palm’s newest devices and was elevated to the position of CEO in June of last year.
Rubinstein has been able to do little about Palm’s continued slide into near-irrelevancy, and has had a hard time finding a buyer for the company. Some are suggesting that his background in hardware and not management may make him unsuitable to lead Palm right now, and it may require somebody with a little more marketing know-how.
I’d argue that its not a matter of knowing how to market the company, it may just be that Palm has little value period. Its time may be long gone and without any marketable product, the value may be solely in the intellectual property it holds. If that’s the case, the $1 billion or so that the company is said to be looking for may be drastically more than anyone is willing to pay.