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Blackberry Sold: Fairfax Buys BB for $4.7 Billion

acheron

TRIBE Member
Fairfax strikes $4.7-billion deal to buy BlackBerry - The Globe and Mail

Fairfax Financial Holdings Ltd. has put together an equity consortium that is seeking to take BlackBerry Ltd. private for $9 (U.S.) a share, a deal valued at about $4.7-billion.

BlackBerry is giving the group six weeks to conduct due diligence, with a final agreement expected by Nov. 4. BlackBerry is able to look for alternative offers in the meantime, but the Fairfax group has a right to match them. Fairfax’s equity partners want to remain anonymous until the due diligence is completed.

“BlackBerry has fallen on hard times recently, but we have every confidence it will be successful again,” Fairfax CEO Prem Watsa said in an interview.

The group has arranged debt financing from Bank of America and Bank of Montreal. “We’re trying to make sure it remains in whole in Canada,” said Mr. Watsa, who stepped down from BlackBerry’s board last month to avoid criticism over a potential conflict of interest as he sought to find a future path for the beleaguered company. Fairfax is its largest shareholder, with a 10 per cent stake.

Mr. Watsa said that a significant amount of the equity in the deal will come from Canada. There are no strategic players, or other technology firms, in the consortium.

“If the right strategic investor comes in we’d consider taking them as a partner in this company,” Mr. Watsa said. “We’re looking at any possibility for the good of the company, its customers and its employees.”

He said that the consortium’s focus going forward will be on the enterprise market, a direction the company said last week that it will already be taking as it gets out of parts of the consumer wireless market.

The Waterloo, Ont.-based company also said last week that it will write off more than $900-million of unsold phones in its second-quarter, which ended August 31, as it cuts 4,500 jobs.
 

KickIT

TRIBE Member
$9/share fack.

They knew when to make the offer. Seeing as Prem was on BB's board of directors he must've knew this was coming.
 

acheron

TRIBE Member
I'm betting the layoffs last week were the last of the table-setting conditions BB had to make for this deal to go through.
 

wickedken

TRIBE Member
I'm betting the layoffs last week were the last of the table-setting conditions BB had to make for this deal to go through.
It does seem suspiciously connected... the announcement was made on Friday, 40% drop recovered to 25% down for the day, and now this buy out offer for just a tad over the range today. Too bad the securities regulators here don't really do anything... or won't, to investigate.
 
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