Research In Motion (RIM) was cutting jobs as part of a broad cost-saving effort aimed at trimming $1 billion (R8.2bn) in annual operating expenses, the ailing maker of BlackBerry smartphones said on Wednesday.

“RIM has committed to achieving significant efficiencies and operating cost reductions over the course of this fiscal year,” said Tenille Kennedy, a spokeswoman for the Canadian company.

RIM said it aimed to save the $1bn in operating costs annually by cutting the number of manufacturing sites. RIM was also “reviewing its organisational efficiency”.

The shake-up might lead to job cuts of 2 000 to 3 000, said Sameet Kanade, an analyst at Northern Securities.

Chief executive Thorsten Heins is working to renew faith in the company after a stock decline of 60 percent in the past year. RIM plans to release a new line-up of phones in an attempt to regain market share from Apple’s iPhone and devices running Google’s Android.

RIM shares fell 3.9 percent to close at $10.33 in New York on Wednesday. – Bloomberg