BlackBerry reportedly open to breakup to pull off sale

Current suitor Fairfax Financial Holdings may not be able to raise enough cash to buy the company as a whole, says Bloomberg.

BlackBerry CEO Thorsten Heins.
BlackBerry CEO Thorsten Hein. Sarah Tew/CNET

BlackBerry may be forced to sell itself off in bits and pieces to complete a buyout deal.

The company has reportedly warmed up to the idea of a complete breakup, a "person with knowledge of the matter" told Bloomberg. BlackBerry's more open stance comes amid reports that Fairfax Financial Holdings may not be able to find the necessary partners or money to pull off its proposed $4.7 billion buyout .

A total breakup would allow companies to bid for BlackBerry's most valuable parts, including its patents and its enterprise business. Such companies as SAP, Cisco, and Samsung have already expressed interest in BlackBerry, according to Bloomberg's sources, but only for certain pieces and not the company as a whole.

"If you break up the company, you're going to get more than the company is worth right now," Sachin Shah, a strategist in special situations and merger arbitrage at Albert Fried & Co, told Bloomberg. "Breaking it up sounds more appetizing for all involved."

About the author

Journalist, software trainer, and Web developer Lance Whitney writes columns and reviews for CNET, Computer Shopper, Microsoft TechNet, and other technology sites. His first book, "Windows 8 Five Minutes at a Time," was published by Wiley & Sons in November 2012.


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