News / Economy

    BlackBerry Exploring Strategic Alternatives

    BlackBerry Chief Executive Thorsten Heins speaks at the company's annual meeting in Waterloo, Ontario, July 2013.BlackBerry Chief Executive Thorsten Heins speaks at the company's annual meeting in Waterloo, Ontario, July 2013.
    x
    BlackBerry Chief Executive Thorsten Heins speaks at the company's annual meeting in Waterloo, Ontario, July 2013.
    BlackBerry Chief Executive Thorsten Heins speaks at the company's annual meeting in Waterloo, Ontario, July 2013.
    Reuters
    Canadian smartphone maker BlackBerry, struggling to compete in a difficult market, has set up a committee to look at options, including joint ventures, partnerships or a sale of the company.

    In a statement released before the market opened on Monday, the company said board member Timothy Dattels, an investment banker and former Goldman Sachs executive, will chair the new committee, which also will include Blackberry Chief Executive Thorsten Heins.

    “Given the importance and strength of our technology, and the evolving industry and competitive landscape, we believe that now is the right time to explore strategic alternatives,” Dattels said in a statement.

    BlackBerry pioneered on-your-hip email with its first smart phones and email pagers. It has struggled to compete against the likes of Apple and phones using Google's Android operating system, however, and its new BlackBerry 10 smartphones have failed to gain traction.

    Reuters last week quoted sources familiar with the situation as saying BlackBerry was considering going private to give it some breathing room as it works through its turnaround.

    BlackBerry shares rose 9.4 percent in premarket trading.

    “While a change in structure could result in a higher stock price in the near term, we do not envision any changes that would help BlackBerry reverse the significant smartphone share loss or rapid decline in service revenues,” said Tim Long, an analyst at BMO Capital markets.

    Heins said he was pleased with the progress that has been made and still sees compelling long-term opportunities for the BlackBerry 10. He said the company will continue a cost-cutting drive that already has shrunk the company considerably.

    Dattels is a senior partner at private equity firm TPG Capital and a former top investment banker at Goldman Sachs. His appointment to BlackBerry's board last year sparked a flurry of speculation that the company might consider a leveraged buyout or going private.

    Dattels' nomination to the board came in June 2012, shortly after BlackBerry hired JPMorgan and RBC Capital Markets to help it evaluate strategies, including a possible overhaul of its business model, as well as other moves like expanding the BlackBerry platform through partnerships and licensing deals.

    Fairfax Financial Chairman and Chief Executive Prem Watsa said on Monday that he would resign from the BlackBerry board due to potential conflicts of interest. Watsa said Fairfax has “no current intention” of selling its Blackberry shares.

    BlackBerry's new line of devices hit store shelves this year just as the high-end smartphone segment had begun to show signs of saturation. Samsung Electronics recently reported results that fell shy of expectations, while Apple earlier this year reported its first quarterly profit decline in more than a decade.

    On the mid- to low end of the market, competition is growing sharply, with Chinese manufacturers, such as Huawei Technologies and ZTE, gaining ground.

    You May Like

    US Leaders Who Served in Vietnam War Look Back and Ahead

    In New York Times opinion piece, Secretary of State John Kerry, Senator John McCain and former Senator Bob Kerrey say as US strengthens relations with Vietnam, it is important to remember lessons learned from war

    Trans-Adriatic Pipeline to Boost European Energy Security

    $4.5 billion-pipeline will become operational in 2020 and will deliver gas from Azerbaijan’s Shah Deniz II field to southern Italy

    Video California Celebration Showcases Local Wines, Balloons

    Annual festival showcases the region's harvested agriculture, fine wines and offers opportunities to experience the gentle breeze in a hot air balloon flight

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Vietnamese-American Youth Optimistic About Obama's Visit to Vietnami
    X
    Elizabeth Lee
    May 22, 2016 6:04 AM
    U.S. President Barack Obama's visit to Vietnam later this month comes at a time when Vietnam is seeking stronger ties with the United States. Many Vietnamese Americans, especially the younger generation, are optimistic Obama’s trip will help further reconciliation between the two former foes. Elizabeth Lee has more from the community called "Little Saigon" located south of Los Angeles.
    Video

    Video Vietnamese-American Youth Optimistic About Obama's Visit to Vietnam

    U.S. President Barack Obama's visit to Vietnam later this month comes at a time when Vietnam is seeking stronger ties with the United States. Many Vietnamese Americans, especially the younger generation, are optimistic Obama’s trip will help further reconciliation between the two former foes. Elizabeth Lee has more from the community called "Little Saigon" located south of Los Angeles.
    Video

    Video First-generation, Afghan-American Student Sets Sights on Basketball Glory

    Their parents are immigrants to the United States. They are kids who live between two worlds -- their parents' homeland and the U.S. For many of them, they feel most "American" at school. It can be tricky balancing both worlds. In this report, produced by Beth Mendelson, Arash Arabasadi tells us about one Afghan-American student who seems to be coping -- one shot at a time.
    Video

    Video Newest US Citizens, Writing the Next Great Chapter

    While universities across the United States honor their newest graduates this Friday, many immigrants in downtown Manhattan are celebrating, too. One hundred of them, representing 31 countries across four continents, graduated as U.S. citizens, joining the ranks of 680,000 others every year in New York and cities around the country.
    Video

    Video Vietnam Sees Strong Economic Growth Despite Incomplete Reforms

    Vietnam has transformed its communist economy to become one of the world's fastest-growing nations. While the reforms are incomplete, multinational corporations see a profitable future in Vietnam and have made major investments -- as VOA's Jim Randle reports.
    Video

    Video Qatar Denies World Cup Corruption

    The head of Qatar’s organizing committee for the 2022 World Cup insists his country's bid to host the soccer tournament was completely clean, despite the corruption scandals that have rocked the sport’s governing body, FIFA. Hassan Al-Thawadi also said new laws would offer protection to migrants working on World Cup construction projects. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
    Video

    Video Infrastructure Funding Puts Cambodia on Front Line of International Politics

    When leaders of the world’s seven most developed economies meet in Japan next week, demands for infrastructure investment world wide will be high on the agenda. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s push for “quality infrastructure investment” throughout Asia has been widely viewed as a counter to the rise of Chinese investment flooding into region.
    Video

    Video Democrats Fear Party Unity a Casualty in Clinton-Sanders Battle

    Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary Clinton claimed a narrow victory in Tuesday's Kentucky primary even as rival Bernie Sanders won in Oregon. Tensions between the two campaigns are rising, prompting fears that the party will have a difficult time unifying to face the presumptive Republican nominee, Donald Trump. VOA national correspondent Jim Malone has more from Washington.
    Video

    Video Portrait of a Transgender Marriage: Husband and Wife Navigate New Roles

    As controversy continues in North Carolina over the use of public bathrooms by transgender individuals, personal struggles with gender identity that were once secret are now coming to light. VOA’s Tina Trinh explored the ramifications for one couple as part of trans.formation, a series of stories on transgender issues.
    Video

    Video Amerikan Hero Flips Stereotype of Middle Eastern Character

    An Iranian American comedian is hoping to connect with American audiences through a film that inverts some of Hollywood's stereotypes about Middle Eastern characters. Sama Dizayee reports.
    Video

    Video Budding Young Inventors Tackle City's Problems with 3-D Printing

    Every city has problems, and local officials and politicians are often frustrated by their inability to solve them. But surprising solutions can come from unexpected places. Students in Baltimore. Maryland, took up the challenge to solve problems they identified in their city, and came up with projects and products to make a difference. VOA's June Soh has more on a digital fabrication competition primarily focused on 3-D design and printing. Carol Pearson narrates.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora

    World Currencies

    EUR
    USD
    0.8954
    JPY
    USD
    109.74
    GBP
    USD
    0.6851
    CAD
    USD
    1.3148
    INR
    USD
    67.673

    Rates may not be current.