In yet another twist in the tale that is BlackBerry, it was revealed that the Canadian company would be calling off the sale of the company in favour of raising US$1b from its largest shareholder as well as other institutional investors. BlackBerry’s largest shareholder, Fairfax Financial Holdings Ltd, has agreed to buy US$250 million of the seven-year subordinated debentures, which will be convertible into common shares at $10. BlackBerry did not name the other institutional investors participating in the deal.
CEO Thorsten Heins would also be stepping down in two weeks, succeeded in the interim by former John Chen, CEO of Sybase – a database software company that SAP AG acquired in 2010. Chen, who will also be BlackBerry’s new executive chairman, joined private equity group Silver Lake as senior adviser a year ago.
What does this mean for BlackBerry? Despite the drop of about 12% to share prices this morning, the future may be in this glimmer of hope that with change and new funding, the former mobile powerhouse will have its time in the sun again. For now, only time will tell.