BlackBerry Announces Completion of U.S. $1 Billion Investment

By Adam Zeis on 13 Nov 2013 10:42 am EST
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If you've been keeping up with all of the BBRY business you've probably got your head in a spin, but BlackBerry dropped another quick announcement today to keep everyone in the loop. The $1 billion investment that was announced just a few weeks ago has been completed and things are moving forward.

BlackBerry received a $1 billion investment from Fairfax Financial, Mackenzie Financial Corp., Brookfield Asset Management Inc., Markel Financial, Canso Investment Counsel Ltd. and Qatar Holding LLC. The investors also now have the option to purchase up to and additional $250 million principal amount of additional debentures within 30 days.

Press Release

WATERLOO, ONTARIO and TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - November 13, 2013) - BlackBerry (NASDAQ: BBRY)(TSX: BB), a world leader in the mobile communications market, today announced that it has completed the previously-announced US $1 billion private placement of convertible debentures to Fairfax Financial Holdings Limited ("Fairfax") and other institutional investors.

"I am excited to be joining this iconic brand at such an important moment in its history," said John S. Chen, who became BlackBerry's Executive Chair and Interim CEO upon the completion of the financing. "I look forward to leading the company through a successful transformation and restoring BlackBerry's position as an innovative, successful company. I believe in the value of this brand and am confident we will rebuild BlackBerry for the benefit of all of our constituencies."

As previously announced, the investors have an option to purchase up to an additional U.S. $250 million principal amount of additional debentures within 30 days.

BMO Capital Markets acted as the sole bookrunner and sole placement agent for the private placement of the debentures.

Reader comments

BlackBerry Announces Completion of U.S. $1 Billion Investment

56 Comments

What did you expect him to say? "Well I am glad we got this extra $1B in debt. I now am sure I will get paid for the next year and we don't have to sell the corporate jet so I can continue to live in California and run the company from my home office. Waterloo is just too cold this time of year."

Sarcasm aside, at leas the is saying the right things, it seemed TH put his foot in his mouth almost every time he spoke.

You think a person who served as a director for Wells Fargo and the Walt Disney company is concerned about compensation?

The man is set for life, regardless of the appropriate compensation he deserves as an interim CEO.
He brings fantastic value to reorganizing the company, and, with the press releases of late - I wouldn't be surprised if he takes the helm more permanently, perhaps spice up his own resume with "Saved two tech companies.... b1tches"

I am sure he will be the CEO for at least another year. I do agree that his reputation and not the money are the key. I do wish he would move to Waterloo though, long distance CEO's don't usually pan out.

Maybe the company should move it's HO to California and be closer to the partners it 'states' are important to its success.

Or not. They managed to attract Frank the CMO to waterloo. Perhaps things will work out after all.

Posted via CB10

I personally think he has been a major part of the problem and a big negative for BBRY as the marketing has been a total fail IMHO. Super Bowl ad.... I think it would be hard to imagine anyone doing a worse job, but different strokes for different folks, but I think he should be canned.

Reputation is probably the number one motivator for him, but don't be fooled into thinking any great and successful business person isn't trying to make as much money as possible, no matter how much money they already have. That mentality is part of what makes those people so successful!

Posted via my Z10

Totally agree. The really rich folks I have done business with and for always seem to have a massive ego to match their wallets.

lol... point taken... That was what I was getting at. The fact that he is saying the right things is a refresher from the otherwise stale and yet absence of TH. It at least gives a voice to Blackberry in its current state.

+1 on the jet. And I thought my commute sucked....

+1 on getting paid, I'd love my annual bonus to be a garanteed 45 million even is shares drop 50%

Seriously, what's up with those numbers? In my personal experience remuneration is 10% of motivation. Where are the leaders committed to success for itself and not just cash hoarders. Would Chen really wake up with a frown if his compensation was "only" 20 million instead of 85?

I think if they can get 10.2.1.xxxx out they have a winning OS. I mean holy cr@p.. This update looks amazing and apps will be a lesser issue with the new updated Android Runtime and APK direct installer.

Then all they need to do is get their hardware in more hands.

These companies will borrow, invest, hire, re-engineer, etc. until the last day when the close the door. Honestly, I do not believe BlackBerry can survive regardless of all that's being said and done.

I wish we had a list and time line of all the predictions of the end of BlackBerry. I would like to see how many times the death of blackberry is predicted after a previous prediction. The monotony is comical.

In a few years time it will be interesting to revisit these predictions and ask what the basis was for those predictions.

Posted via CB10

With improved Android app support, there is no reason why BlackBerry can't be successful and profitable on a much smaller scale. The reason an OS can't be successful with a small market share is because developers won't support that OS, leading to little to no interest from consumers. BB10 allows people to have access to a large number of apps, even if developers don't want to support the OS. This buys BlackBerry time to grow a user base at their own pace while still providing their customers with the necessary apps to keep them happy with their BlackBerry.

Android app support isn't an ideal solution, but it is the main key to giving BlackBerry all the time they need, as long as the company can figure out a way to stop the cash burn, or at least slow it dramatically.

Posted via my Z10

Opening up the Android runtime will be beneficial to the BB10 platform. Having access to the large app ecosystem while also having access to QUALITY native apps in BlackBerry AppWorld would be ideal. Many BB fans would easily opt for a native version above a port so long as feature for feature they are the same.

Just a note - with 10.2.1 it is NOT a port anymore - it is an actual app running on BlackBerry while using Android runtime. Something similar to virtual OS

Hmmm..... If they can squeeze out USD1B that fast... I just hope..... they don't screw up in the same pace again... should slow down on the job cuts and really focus on producing something phenomenal this time... YES PHENOMENAL!!!! Not your okok~~ some improvement..... attitude.....

That's right BRRY! Now let's get back to being the Iconic company that started the smartphone era! BlackBerry for LIFE!

Posted via CB10

I hope they spend some of it on marketing. Somebody at my work said to me yesterday "Wow, is that a BlackBerry? Since when did they have touchscreens?" - THAT is BlackBerry's bigggest problem!

Its amazing how many people have no idea that BlackBerry has a completely new OS that is nothing like the old one! They need to realize that the people that liked the old OS have moved on to BB10 (or plan to). The people that started hating BBOS need to know that BB10 is nothing like what those people remember. Get the message out that BBOS was slow and outdated and BB10 is completely new and fast, and was created from scratch.

Maybe even admit that BlackBerry was slow to adapt, but now that they have adapted, the wait was worth it.

*I am a huge fan of BBOS, and I actually liked it more than the competing OSes, but I realize most people don't agree with me.

Posted via my Z10

BlackBerry rolled out 10.2 in the US.. how about calling your carrier and ask them why they are the last carrier is almost the world to push 10.2!!

Posted from my Q10 with only 1GB of RAM

Doesn't bbry have a team that manages Carrier Relationships?

Maybe replace the team with people who can do the work? Then the partnerships won't have to rely on user requests to a carriers call centres.

Posted via CB10

Yea but I doubt the carriers care much if at all if the phones are held by such a small percentage of their customer base. Hard to give them a reason to care at this point. Really it shouldn't take them this long even if they don't care but telecoms in general tend to be profit driven monkeys.

Well, i personally would like to thank him for funding the next billion dollar write down on the Q10 and Q5 next month. I raise my glass to you sir

Posted via CB10

At a $1bb burn rate per quarter, they're going to need more money very soon.

I'm right there with you...

Cheers!

Let's hope he has some tricks up his sleeves to get the ball rolling forward.

Posted via the best phone ever. The white Z10.

I think we all should help Mr. Chen turn around the company.
Team crackberry has stepped up to the left, but keep moving.
I just help convert a few whatsapp user to bbm, it's a small move but it will pay off in the future..
I need ever crackberry team members to help spread the positive news about BlackBerry.

White Rogers Z10 10.2 Dark Theme

Time to get the marketing groups out and educate the public and business's on these great mobile computing devices. Oh and push carriers to release updates.

Posted Via My Z10 Smarterphone !

I would put at least half (possibly all) of the investment into a marketing campaign and/or filling the app gap.

Posted via CB10

Let the Marketing companies bid for the contract with the promise of a long commitment worth millions but the campaign has to raise the amount of BB10 by 50,000 in the US for starters.

Time to outsource the marketing as the in house team haven't earned their money.

Posted via CB10

Why does sarcasm live so strong on the Internet? People act so tough behind a computer/phone screen. I bet the same people kiss the crap out of their boss' butt.

Posted via CB10

Now for my positive comment: I agree with the increase in marketing and carrier support.

Posted via CB10

Hey we can't control the $1.25B US deal but lets get this Google APP issue running smooth , lets promote BBM, and Chen and BlackBerry I believe have the enterprise in full focus so Keep Moving BB