Research In Motion Ltd. (Nasdaq: RIMM) jumped the most in seven months amid speculation by a Jefferies & Co analyst that Samsung Electronics Co. may license the struggling BlackBerry maker’s new software or consider buying the company.
The shares gained 4.4 percent to $7.63 in late-morning traded Wednesday after rising as much as 13 percent, the biggest intraday gain since Dec. 21, 2011. Peter Misek, a Jefferies analyst, said Tuesday the Waterloo, Ontario-based company may be trying to revive talks with Samsung to license its BlackBerry 10 operating system.
“Samsung is considering ramping up its internal development efforts, licensing BB10 or buying RIM,” Misek, who has the equivalent of a sell rating on RIM, wrote in a note. “Samsung is undecided.”
RIM, struggling with falling sales and shrinking market share, is counting on a pair of new BB10 phones expected to be released early next year to revive the BlackBerry brand among U.S. consumers. Its share of the global smartphone market fell to 4.8 percent in the second quarter from 12 percent a year earlier as Google Inc.’s Android operating system climbed to 68 percent and Apple Inc.’s iPhone platform slipped to 17 percent, according to IDC.
RIM doesn’t comment on stock market fluctuations, said Nick Manning, a company spokesman. Amy Grenek, an outside spokeswoman for Samsung, didn’t immediately return a call seeking comment.
Options interest in RIM has also surged. Almost 100,000 calls to buy the shares changed hands, 4 times the four-week average daily volume and 1.5 times the number of puts to sell, according to U.S. options data compiled by Bloomberg.
[RIM maintains a research and development operation in the Research Triangle, N.C. area.]