BlackBerry Maker Raises Sales Forecast

Research In Motion Ltd. (RIMM) reported a stronger first-quarter profit Wednesday and raised its second-quarter sales forecast, boosted by sizzling demand for its BlackBerry (search) wireless e-mail device.

But its stock fell in after-hours trading, as the results and improved outlook failed to meet the lofty expectations of some investors.

RIM reported net income rose to $132.5 million, or 67 cents a share, in the quarter ended May 28 from $55 million, or 28 cents a share, in the corresponding period a year earlier. Adjusted to exclude litigation charges and a tax recovery, RIM reported a profit of 56 cents per shares.

Revenue at the Waterloo, Ontario-based firm rose to $453.9 million from $269.6 million.

Analysts had expected a profit of 54.5 cents a share before exceptional items, on revenues of $451.9 million, according to Reuters Estimates.

The company raised its second-quarter revenue forecast to a range of $465 million to $490 million from $460 million to $485 million, and said it expects third-quarter revenues of $525 million to $550 million.

Analysts had forecast second-quarter revenue of $483.6 million and third-quarter sales of $527.7 million.

RIM shares fell to $71.45 on the electronic Inet brokerage system from their close of $75.91 on Nasdaq.

"It's typical whisper-number expectations getting high going in. But I think here you've got it combined with all these abnormalities going on in the legal side. You have people gaming the stock I think," said American Technology Research analyst Rob Sanderson.

"Now that the numbers are out, it's 'what's the next data point?' We're back in this legal limbo."

RIM shares tumbled earlier this month when the company disclosed it had reopened its legal battle with NTP Inc. after failing to finalize a $450 million settlement that would have resolved their bitter and potentially damaging patent dispute.

The news renewed the risk of a court injunction that would halt U.S. sales of RIM's flagship wireless e-mail device.

($1 = $1.23 Canadian)