BlackBerry confirmed to go private in deal valued at $4.7 billion

By on September 23, 2013, 3:30 PM
android, ios, blackberry, private, mobile operating system, fairfax financial holdings

The saga surrounding Canadian handset maker BlackBerry appears to be over. On Monday, the company announced they have reached an agreement to be taken private by a consortium led by Fairfax Financial Holdings as part of a deal valued at $4.7 billion. Fairfax already owns 10 percent of BlackBerry, ownership that will be contributed to the consortium.

A letter of intent signed by BlackBerry would pay shareholders $9 per share in cash which is a tad bit more than it is trading at currently. The consortium has until November 4 to complete due diligence on BlackBerry’s books during which time the handset maker can entertain other offers should they choose to. A press release on the matter noted Fairfax was seeking financing from Bank of America Merrill Lynch and BMO Capital Markets.

BlackBerry arrived at this point on the recommendation of a special committee of its board. BlackBerry chairperson Barbara Stymiest said the special committee is seeking the best available outcome for the company’s constituents as well as their shareholders.

Going private would put an end to one of the more prominent falls from grace in recent memory. BlackBerry was once an elite brand among those in the corporate world but the company’s failure to get past the legacy operating system that brought it to prominence was ultimately its undoing. Apple’s iOS and Google’s Android operating system have since taken over the top spots and despite a final push that played out this year, BlackBerry was never able to recover.




User Comments: 4

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JC713 JC713 said:

Maybe this is the right direction for BB. Who knows.

coppersloane coppersloane said:

It is the right direction for them. Mobile users are a fashionable lot. They've all flocked to Apple and will stay with Apple even if the phones never introduce a single innovation from this day forward. BlackBerry proved it by developing an amazing trio of phones with features no other phone has. Innovating didn't save them. These days, once you're out of the game, you're out for good. Phones are an accessory now, and a statement of character. Consumer choice has little do with function. Farewell, BlackBerry. Fare thee well elsewhere.

mctommy said:

It is the right direction for them. Mobile users are a fashionable lot. They've all flocked to Apple and will stay with Apple even if the phones never introduce a single innovation from this day forward. BlackBerry proved it by developing an amazing trio of phones with features no other phone has. Innovating didn't save them. These days, once you're out of the game, you're out for good. Phones are an accessory now, and a statement of character. Consumer choice has little do with function. Farewell, BlackBerry. Fare thee well elsewhere.

It had to do with function back in 2007/2008. But Blackberry took their time to develop something for the consumer thinking their lead in the business world would remain untouched. Then the iPhone came. Then the Android phones came. It took them what... 4 years to bring out something on par with everyone else with the Blackberry OS 7/Blackberry 7 Devices. I actually loved my BB bold until I saw what other apple/android phones could do...

2 people like this | Guest said:

BB10 phones are great, maybe the best. Unfortunately, they are competing with giants like Apple who due to their marketing genius could sell snow to the Eskimos. This masks a real lack of ingenuity displayed by Apple in the last few releases of the iphone. Yet they break sales records. :)

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