Immigrant becomes new CEO of Canadian phone giant, RIM

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German-born immigrant Thorsten Heins, 54, is the new chief executive at Research In Motion, maker of Blackberry smart phones. The little known chief operating officer, who joined RIM four years ago from Siemens AG, replaces RIM’s founders after the company has lost tens of billions in market value.Heins joined RIM in December 2007, becoming senior vice-president for the handheld business unit. He holds a master’s degree in science and physics from the University of Hanover, Germany. At Siemens AG, he spent 23 years, rising through the ranks of customer service, sales and product-management positions before becoming its chief technology officer.During a conference call after the appointment, Heins said, “I want us to have a bit more of an ear to the consumer market, understanding trends, not just listening to what Bay Street is telling you. We need to do a better job on that.”Turkish-born immigrant Mike Lazaridis and Canadian businessman Jim Balsillie, cofounded and served as co-CEOs of the Waterloo, Ontario-based RIM until the appointment of Heins. – Canadian Immigrant-

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