BlackBerry is requesting a U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and an Ontario Securities Commission review of what it calls “false and misleading” reports about the return rate of BlackBerry’s new Z10 smartphone.
Cited yesterday in a Bloomberg report, investment management and research firm Detwiler Fenton & Co. stated that U.S. retailers were seeing large numbers of returns of the new smartphone, adding that “in several cases” those returns exceed sales.
BlackBerry immediately refuted Detwiler’s claims, saying U.S. and global return rates for the Z10 were in line or better than what the company had anticipated.
“The materially false and misleading comments about device return rates in the United States harm BlackBerry and our shareholders,” said Steve Zipperstein, BlackBerry’s chief legal officer, in a statement.
Verizon Wireless has joined the company in its challenge of the claims and BlackBerry President and CEO Thorsten Heins added that “such a conclusion is absolutely without basis and BlackBerry will not leave it unchallenged."
The Z10, which last month made its U.S. debut, has widely been regarded as a make-or-break device for the company. Following years of watching its once dominant U.S. smartphone market share dwindle in the shadow of Google and Apple, BlackBerry radically redesigned its BlackBerry 10 operating system and pinned its comeback hopes on integrating the platform into the Z10 and its upcoming QWERTY cousin, the Q10.
BlackBerry’s stock is up more than 2 percent as of 8:55 a.m. CT after yesterday falling 8 percent.