Co-founders considering BlackBerry buy back bidOctober 14 - 8am
The two co-founders of struggling BlackBerry are considering making an offer to save the embattled smartphone manufacturer.
Confirming their intentions through a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Mike Lazaridis and Douglas Fregin currently own an 8% stake in the company collectively.
After founding the company in 1984, Lazaridis left his role as vice-chair of the board in May this year, but now looks set to come back in and save the once called Research In Motion brand.
The pair issued the following statement in the filing to the SEC:
“In light of the issuer’s recent announcement that its board of directors has formed a special committee to explore strategic alternatives to enhance value and increase scale, the reporting persons are considering all available options with respect to their holdings of the shares, including, without limitation, a potential acquisition of all the outstanding shares of the issuer that they do not currently own, either by themselves or with other interested investors (an “acquisition”).”
Yet both Lazaridis and Fregin face competition, with reports that Cisco, Google and SAP have all entered the running the buy the Canadian firm
Coupled with a US$4.7bn deal with Toronto-based Fairfax Financial last month, and it appears the company is not short of suitors.
Yet despite once being a force in the smartphone industry, the company’s decision to go private followed a warning last month that the business could lose nearly US$1bn during the next quarter.
Announcing job cuts of up to 4,500 also, many analysts now believe BlackBerry’s business has simply “sailed off a cliff.”
At present however, the company is still weighting up its options.
“The special committee, with the assistance of BlackBerry’s independent financial and legal advisors, is conducting a robust and thorough review of strategic alternatives,” a BlackBerry spokesman told Reuters in September.
Who do you think will buy BlackBerry? Tell us your thoughts in the comments below