BlackBerry is No Longer For Sale; CEO Thorsten Heins Steps Down
November 4, 2013 Leave a comment
BlackBerry has been doing a lot lately to try and turn itself around. It recently appointed Alicia Keys as it’s “Creative Director.” Now, I don’t work in technology, but I don’t think being a celebrity really qualifies you for this position. However, I’m sure they wanted to associate her with the brand more than anything.
It was just announced today that Thorsten Heins, the CEO of BlackBerry is stepping down. The new CEO will be John S. Chen, who was previously the CEO of SAP company Sybase for several years. Mr. Chen was the CEO for Sybase from 1998 until the company was acquired by SAP of Germany in 2010. Many people credit him for saving Sybase from bankruptcy.
The company was also looking to sell, but instead of purchasing BlackBerry, Fairfax Financial Holdings will invest $1 billion through debentures that can be converted into common shares at $10 a share.
According to The New York Times, “There has long been skepticism about the ability of Fairfax to turn its tentative offer, which values BlackBerry at $4.7 billion, into a firm bid. Since it first made the offer in September, shares in the ailing smartphone maker never rose to Fairfax’s $9 a share price.”
Other companies have also looked into BlackBerry as a potential acquisition, although it is not clear if they have any interest in a bid.
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom; Blake, Cassels & Graydon; and Torys are serving as legal advisers. Perella Weinberg Partners, JPMorgan Chase, and RBC Capital Markets are currently advising BlackBerry.