BlackBerry poaches former LiveOps CEO Marty Beard

Marty Beard, BlackBerry COO
Marty Beard, BlackBerry COO

BlackBerry has named former LiveOps Chief Executive Officer Marty Beard Chief Operating Officer. As COO, Beard is responsible for BlackBerry's marketing, BlackBerry 10 Application Development, customer care and quality control.

Beard had been CEO of LiveOps since 2011. He joined the cloud applications company after serving as President at Sybase 365 for six years.

At Sybase, which was acquired by SAP in 2010, Beard served under BlackBerry CEO John Chen who served as CEO of Sybase from 1998 to 2012. Prior to Sybase, Beard was Vice President of Oracle Online for three years.

A tough task

Beard's job will be to turn around the perception of BlackBerry, which once dominated the enterprise smartphone market but has seen its market share steadily decline in the past few years.

During the first quarter of 2014, BlackBerry suffered a quarterly loss of $423 million (£254 million, AU$457 million). BlackBerry brought in just $976 million (£586 million, AU$1 billion) in revenue for the three months ending on March 1.

BlackBerry recently formed a partnership that gave IBM the ability to directly manage devices running the BlackBerry 10 operating system. At the time, the move was seen as a coup for BlackBerry.

Unfortunately for BlackBerry, the IBM partnership was overshadowed last week when Apple also formed an exclusive partnership with IBM to develop more than 100 industry-specific data and analytics apps developed for Apple's mobile devices.

BlackBerry 10

Beard will also have to improve BlackBerry 10, a device even Chen admitted takes a while to get used to using.

"The key is it took me a while to get used to it. For most consumers if they get to our new phone and it's not intuitively obvious they get a little shy and they don't want to continue using it," Chen said in February.