BlackBerry has drawn interest from distressed-investing firm Cerberus Capital Management, according to multiple reports, a development that could complicate its tentative deal with Fairfax Financial Holdings to go private.
BlackBerry it still a public company, and though it declined to hold a conference call to discuss its weak quarterly results last week, the company exposed the depth of its problems and challenges in a regulatory filing. The filing lays bare that the company is struggling in emerging markets, especially against smartphones running Google's Android software, where it once found growth and success.
BlackBerry, in the midst of trying to go private, is hitting back against a recent report from research firm Gartner that warned the company does not have a long-term future.
BlackBerry is trying to save itself by going private in a $4.7 billion deal. However, the road that has led up to this moment in the company's history was paved by splits between board members, poor production execution, especially after BlackBerry purchased QNX in 2010, and a failure to keep up with the changes in the smartphone market, according to an in-depth investigation by The Globe and Mail.
As it had warned, BlackBerry posted dismal quarterly results for its fiscal second quarter, including a $965 million loss. The company warned about the results last Friday and on Monday said it had struck an initial and tentative $4.7 billion deal to go private.
Fairfax Financial Holdings CEO Prem Watsa, whose company is leading a $4.7 billion bid to take BlackBerry private, said he has confidence in both his ability to get the deal done and BlackBerry's future prospects.
BlackBerry said it has reached an initial deal with a consortium of investors led by Fairfax Financial Holdings to take the smartphone pioneer private in an agreement that values the company at $4.7 billion.
In late June 2012, when BlackBerry delayed the launch of its BlackBerry 10 platform until early 2013, I wrote that it might be too little, too late. That sentiment seemed to be confirmed on Friday, when BlackBerry said it would cut 4,500 jobs--around 40 percent of its workforce--and post a nearly $1 billion loss for its most recent quarter. Even more dispiritingly, the company signaled it would shift its focus away from the consumer device market. The question now is: Can BlackBerry survive as a services company? I doubt it.
Former BlackBerry co-CEO Mike Lazaridis is considering mounting a bid to take the company private in conjunction with several private equity firms, according to multiple reports. The reports come on the heels of BlackBerry's disclosure on Friday that it will cut 4,500 jobs--around 40 percent of its workforce--and post a nearly $1 billion loss for its most recent quarter, mainly due to unsold BlackBerry 10 smartphone inventory.
BlackBerry said it will cut 4,500 jobs, or 40 percent of its workforce, and previewed extremely weak quarterly results ahead of its next earnings announcement, which is due Sept. 27.