RIM's shares have practically fallen off a cliff in recent months, plunging from a 52-week high of $150 to today's price of around $68.
With the credit crunch likely to slow corporate IT spending, RIM could become even more vulnerable if the financial crisis doesn't dissipate quickly.
That leaves the company vulnerable to a takeover from a cash-rich suitor such as Microsoft, according to analysts. "RIM is a massive strategic fit [for Microsoft]," claims Canaccord Adams analyst Peter Misek, in an interview with Reuters. "I'm fairly certain they have a standing offer to buy them at $50 [a share]."
Microsoft has around $23 billion of cash on its balance sheet, with RIM currently valued at around $34 billion. Such a move will position MS aggressively in the mobile space competing directly against Nokia, Sonu-Ericsson and Apple.