Report: Former Apple CEO Sculley considers BlackBerry purchase

Add former Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) CEO John Sculley to list of reported potential bidders for BlackBerry (NASDAQ:BBRY), according to a Globe and Mail article.

The report, citing unnamed sources, said Sculley is exploring a bid for the company. Sculley declined to comment but told the paper: "I've been a long-time BlackBerry fan and user."

BlackBerry is currently working with a consortium led by its largest shareholder, Fairfax Financial Holdings, to take BlackBerry private in a $4.7 billion deal. But while the parties conduct due diligence on that potential bid, BlackBerry can look for other suitors until Nov. 4.

BlackBerry co-founders Mike Lazaridis and Doug Fregin also are considering a bid for BlackBerry, according to a regulatory filing made public earlier this month. Other parties are reportedly eyeing BlackBerry as well.

Last week the Wall Street Journal reported that Chinese PC and smartphone maker Lenovo was considering purchasing all of BlackBerry. The report, citing unnamed sources, said that Lenovo had signed a non-disclosure agreement that lets it look at BlackBerry's books. BlackBerry and Lenovo declined to comment, according to the Journal. Additionally, last week multiple news outlets reported that Cerberus Capital Management, which specializes in distressed assets, signed a similar agreement with the struggling smartphone maker.

Sculley, who also ran PepsiCo and was famous for his clashes with former Apple CEO Steve Jobs, said in an interview with the Globe and Mail that whoever takes over BlackBerry needs to have the requisite experience to turn the company around.

"The only thing I would say is, I think there's a lot of future value in BlackBerry," he said, "but without experienced people who have run this type of business, and without a strategic plan, it would be really challenging ... Whoever buys it would have to have a strategic plan that was credible and could succeed, and they would want to have an experienced team that would be able to implement that plan."

BlackBerry (NASDAQ:BBRY) said Tuesday night that within the first 24 hours of availability, more than 10 million users had downloaded the cross-platform version of its signature Messenger app for Google's (NASDAQ:GOOG) Android and Apple's iOS platforms. The BBM rollout is a bright spot for the company, which reported a$965 million loss in its most recent quarter, mainly due to a charge it took on unsold inventory of its Z10 smartphone. BlackBerry also said it would cut 4,500 employees, or 40 percent of its workforce, and move away from the consumer smartphone market.

For more:
- see this Globe and Mail article
- see this The Verge article

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