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Mike Lazaridis is considering an acquisition of BlackBerry

By Chris Umiastowski on 10 Oct 2013 02:56 pm EDT
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Today the co-founders of Research In Motion submitted an SEC filing stating that they are considering making a bid to buy all the shares of BlackBerry that they don’t currently own.

Mike Lazaridis and Doug Fregin jointly filed a 13D with the SEC, which is a standard document that must be filed when you control over 5% of the shares of a public company.  Lazaridis already held over 5%, but the new document says that he’s teaming up with Fregin, and they jointly own 8% of the stock.

When  you get down to “Item 4” of the filing, entitled “Purpose of the Transaction”, here’s what it says:

In light of the Issuer’s recent announcement that its board of directors has formed a Special Committee to explore strategic alternatives to enhance value and increase scale, the Reporting Persons are considering all available options with respect to their holdings of the Shares, including, without limitation, a potential acquisition of all the outstanding Shares of the Issuer that they do not currently own, either by themselves or with other interested investors (an “Acquisition”).

Also, according to the document, Lazaridis and Fregin have hired Goldman Sachs, Centerview Partners and others to advise them, so they could be quite serious.

There is no indication that the potential Lazaridis / Fregin bid has anything to do with Prem Watsa and Fairfax Financial’s bid.  Unless I’m wrong, my read of the SEC filing tells me this is a totally separate potential bid.

To be clear, neither Lazaridis or Fregin have bought any new shares recently.  The last transaction appears to be from 2012 when Lazaridis bought $50 million worth of stock.

There have been rumors circulating for a while that Lazaridis may enter the mix again.  I thought if it was going to happen it would be in support of the Fairfax bid, but that doesn’t seem to be the case.

Things are getting interesting.  We’ll keep following the story.

320 comments

tw1g_007

Back to do what? F*ck up the company even more? Didn't you forget how that turned out the first time?

via CB10 (BB Z10 : BLK : OS 10.1) [ Channel @ C0012477B for BB News, MMA & Tech Updates ]

DustBow

didn't say it was good or bad....just that he's back....I'm not sure it matters who buys them at this point

thedustytaco

Guys he is a man with experience. Sure he went through failing the company but learnt the mistake he had made. After all humans make mistakes. With this experience im sure he wont make the same mistake twice as everyone already knows he messed blackberry up.

He is still the man who brought the company to its glory once and perhaps again. He was just over confident about blackberry and became blind about touch screen revolution because of over confidence

sk8er_tor

He's a much smarter man than people believe. BB10 now is all because of acquisitions made while he was running the show. And we all know BB10 is great, it's marketing and communications who have F-ed up.

Thunderbuck

I actually think this is a good development. Lazaridis is a brilliant engineer, and I personally think Jim Balsillie made more of the policy decisions that actually ran the company into the ground.

My biggest concern is that I'd like to hear what Mike L. would do differently this time.

CecilTsunami

Regardless of the past, the company being bought back by its founders suggests they have an emotional attachment to it that is the best bet of keeping the company together, no?

Posted via CB10

Spades1234

That's actually a good point. If Mike wants back in, I doubt it would be to sell it off into parts, he would be trying to fix 'his' baby. And WE would all still get to use the ever-maturing platform.

IJKBB10

Of course they do. They don't want to see BlackBerry formerly known as RIM the company they founded broken up and sold off to the highest bidder. BlackBerry still has a future providing solutions to enterprises with their software and smart phones. BB 10 devices are solid phones

Pete The Penguin

Mike L recently admitted he ought to have bought QNX two yrs earlier. Maybe he has learnt his lesson...

Time will tell.

crimsonking

I'm sure he did, he is not stupid, I think him taking over might be a good thing for BlackBerry under the current circumstances.

Posted via CB10

TommyBB

I'm with you Thunderbuck.

Posted via CB10

galebic

I share your thoughts on this one. And I sure wish that Mike L steps up again and drives BlackBerry back where it was before.

Posted via CB10

XDrew42

Agreed would love to hear his pitch. Not a doubt in my mind that he did make most bad decisions.....He now knows that he and BlackBerry are not invincible. Hope he reads here more often and consults with the Experts.....hehe, Cause this place could run the show!

BGK

Yes, - BlackBerry is Mike's baby and he was probably as horrified as any of us after watching Thorston Heins at work. I do hope and believe that Mike will do whatever it takes to get BlackBerry off the ground again.

robhenry24

I think Mike would be great to reinvent BlackBerry and bring it back.!!

dannyd86

This guy faught everything that would have made Blackberry a succesfull company, if he runs it privately behind the seens I have zero hope for a turnaround.

jelp2

Ummmmm.... he made BlackBerry a successful company.

dannyd86

Sorry I meant a successful company at all points of transition after the iphone was released.

biggest BlackBerry fan

Thank you... I was gonna post EXACTLY the same thing...

birdman_38

I would like to see him take over as President with an active role in the company's innovation process. Hire a young, dynamic customer-focused CEO to run things with a focus on killer marketing.

TioPepe78

Hope he has learned from old mistakes and knows what to do now.

berries_good

Reality maybe it's worth more than $5B. With all the assets and enterprise that has been all deployed and the platform is only 10 months old.

SK122387

Well, if BlackBerry were to remain enterprise-focused, then in hindsight, all of Mike's choices would have been great.

He didn't really want to get into the consumer space anyways.

If BlackBerry stopped trying to be an alternative to iPhones and Androids, and did its own thing, there's no reason to believe that being owned by these guys would be a bad thing.

revtech

yup . . . like it or not at least it would be his company and his money to do with as he pleased . . sometimes I wonder if what went on in his head was something like "Ok, fine, get rid of me and bring in someone else and take the company in a different direction if you want, I'll be there to catch you when it all falls apart" . . . ?

RedxD

Well wasn't he the one that funded the company and made it a big success in the first place? :)

Playbook007

Thank you.....Its so easy to criticize when you have accomplished nothing of the sort yourself. Remember that this is the man who founded and paid for the nano tech center at Waterloo University. I believe he sees a future in BlackBerry more than most.

Trolls should be forced to use BB10!

IJKBB10

Of course BlackBerry still has a future especially when it comes to governments, the military and companies that require high security. There's no competition to that! Plus they re the only company that still provides enterprise solutions whereas Apple and Google are consumer focus.

Tumacana

They need to stay in one piece for this to happen. I think Lazardis is Blackberry's only hope to stay a company as a whole. Anyone else will sell it for scraps. Premsa included.

jgz10

"Trolls should be forced to use BB10!"

would that be considered torture? I know using the z10 since feb has been torture for me!

Playbook007

Well I feel sorry for you. I really like BB10 currently and I like the forward thinking of its technology.

Trolls should be forced to use BB10!

juliezee

You'd think if something were that bad you'd switch. Or maybe your scared of missing the Z10 if you did?

Posted via CB10

jgz10

Trust me. I'll be switching in February when my upgrade is available.

Hopefully i'll be able to get $50 for it then on kijiji. Probably not but since I'm in waterloo I might find a chump to pay that much.

wincyUt

Lol!! You don't have to wait till February to switch because I'm willing to give you $100.00 (one hundred bucks) for your Z10 right now. I want to free you from your torture or pain. :) If you don't accept my offer please forever speak no more.

RedxD

I wouldn't pay $100 to free him from his TORTURE LOL he should take your offer

Posted via CB10

wincyUt

Lmao!! I think he is all talk. I dare him. He probably has never owned a Z10. :)

jgz10

Trust me. I wish I never did. But shame on me for trying to give BB one last chance.

I've had a curve, bold, torch and a play book.

never again.

eduso

+10.2.0.1791 ja ja ja

jgz10

When will 10.2 even be released? Before or after cross platform BBM?

RedxD

Your Z must be defective, my devices work great with 10.1 on them.

Posted via CB10

jgz10

Unfortunately you guys don't understand how phone contracts work. Probably because you're either using BB bolds given to you from work or you're month to month on an old Curve.

All the big talkers and almost no one is even using BB10.

RedxD

I have two DABs and one LE Z10 and one Q10 coming, tell me again how I'm not using BB10 LOL

Posted via CB10

yzerken

I will gladly give you $110.00 if it's black and even $130.00 if it's white. Just let me know and it's cash today :-)

XDrew42

(Reply to wincyUT ) You are awesome! lol I will add $50 bucks....

RedxD

I'll give you $10 for your Z10, you know if hate it that much

RedxD

If you're serious and your device is functional I'd be happy to buy it for $25

berries_good

Lol! I'm talking about the troll who hates the zed.

GRojasHruska

I'll sell z10s for a hundred, I can confidently sell 3 and a q10 if this guy has it too, I'll give you 75% and keep 25% as my fee
=)

John Pawling

I feel sorry for you. Obviously the phone doesn't fit your needs.

Posted via CB10 1.4.2 on Z10 10.1.0.4181 on the Rogers Network

Anonymous2039

Funny, I just walked out of that building not five minutes ago.

Posted via CB10

anon5814103

I think the one great quality that he'd bring is a "hunger" for it to succeed in a way that only a co-founder has

Posted via CB10

revtech

See how things filter down from the top? Alec uses an F word in an email and now everyone feels empowered to use it in the blogs . . . (/wink/wink)

bradu1

Lmao!

Posted via CB10

NotGoodIMO

Well, at least you can't doubt his integrity. I don't think we can say that for sure about the current management. Also, Mike has the passion and attachment with the company to make it successful again. If you want the company 'Blackberry' to succeed again then he is probably the best choice. Even Steve jobs made mistakes with Apple in the first round but came back mighty strong and changed the company. Sometimes you need the extra push to prove yourself again.

Brutal Efficiency

You are bloody kidding me!!!! The first time!?!?

You mean when he single handedly brought it to number 1!?!?!?!?

NotGoodIMO

You have got too many exclamations and questions mark in your comments of two sentences. I am not sure what you are trying to say buy I am guessing you don't think it's fare to compare Steve Jobs with Mike Lazaridis. Steve Jobs was up there with Microsoft in round one but Apple had started to lose its luster when Jobs left, primarily because of Apple's closed architecture.
Remember, one of the main advantage with iPhone right now is its ecosystem. I wonder what would have happened if Apple had gone with Steve Jobs idea of keeping iPhone closed, that is not allowing third party apps on the phone. I would argue that Mike pretty much brought Blackberry to number one as well, in fact he is the technical brain behind Blackberry unlike Jobs who was more of a visionary and a marketing guy.

bbfanboi

It can't be anything as bad as things are right now -- we're actually talking of selling off the assets piece by piece. I think Mike L is a good candidate for bringing the company back. He is the sort of visionary that they need right now. Fairfax is a bit of an unknown but I think Prem has the right ideas too. I think Mike will have a different perspective now than a few years ago. Don't forget he brought together all the pieces to create BB10.

grisfis145

Balisie was the rude and cocky one. Mike is just the engineer.

Posted via CB10

imcurved

Could one really make BlackBerry worse than the state it's in right now? The thing I'm confused is I thought Mike and Prem are on the same side.

RonBro66

This guy is no Steve Jobs. How deep can thia guy bury the company even further? This is the same guy that brushed off the iPhone.

BlackBerry is finished. My S4 is so much better than yourZ30.

eduso

S4 better? ja ja ja that is a lady's toy. Kidding me!?

Tung Vu1

Kids use ifone and android. #BBRY4ver #ichooseBlackBerry10

Posted via CB10

jelp2

Yea and Edison brushed off AC. You're point??

JPSKILLZ

Brotha' I've used an S4...it's not. LoL

Posted via CB10

Kiddo2050

Actually they had to Kick Steve Jobs out of Apple he was doing such a shitty job, they brought him back after Bill Gates stepped in to keep Apple afloat. Then Jobs ran it as the mediocre company he knows how to run. They then hired Jon Ivy and a couple of other smart people and they were off (temporarily). Jobs was an arrogant cheerleader. Without pure luck we'd know him as the loser he actually was. Anyone, no one will be talking about Jobs in 10 years. Apple might still exist but it'll have it's 10% market share as is the norm for Apple.

stego

I trust Mike more than I trust Prem Watsa!

Posted from my Z10 using CB10

sakin13

Steve Jobs was kicked out of Apple at some point. not saying there is anything to relate Lazaridis with Jobs . Either way Lazaridis is definitely Wiser now... i would personally welcome his return

Kiddo2050

pfft don't fool yourself, no one is going to give a poo about jobs in five to 10 years.

Villain

totally... how well did the company do when he stepped down? thor did wonders!

the guy who created the whole company definitely wouldn't have passion to rebuild his baby eh lol

Sunofabob

he could return with a much better outlook on the market and the placement of bb

BionicKris

I agree. Maybe stepping away for a bit gave him a better view of what they need to do to go forward.

Posted via CB10

varun wasan

Mike L 10.3

IChooseBlackberry10

AndreyLepher

First ! that would be Great Keep Movin BBRY

AndreyLepher

we should do an open letter show our love to BBRY and make em think twice bfore they ruin or shatter the Company BB10 OS is in a Right way just need more time and effort to make it happen

Plazmic Flame

How does it feel to fail at "first"?

varun wasan

Fail at first and land on page 2nd!

IChooseBlackberry10

lynxs_claw

There is so much value and potential in this company.. it's a shame what has happened to them.

TioPepe78

Could that be that Fairfax didn't find the financial and Lazaridis is entering the game with Watsa but don't want to publicly go together?

newbaskerville

I hope he does it, hopefully it will be a steve jobs type of comeback, where he comes back and saves the company from turmoil and turns it into a great success again. Also, it gets rid of that committee that I so much detest.

A camel is a horse designed by a committee.

Posted via CB10

danfrancisco

Loving that pic of Mike L!

johnnyuk

He's saying "Does anybody here know what consumers want because I sure as hell don't!".

Mike L is the wrong man for CEO in a consumer orientated industry where there is no such thing as a 'business only' phone or tablet anymore. Give him engineering problems to solve but don't give him the company to drive even further in to oblivion.

Mike L blocked all the good ideas from 2010 onwards within BlackBerry that would have created new revenue streams and kept the company relevant in a consumer lead mobile world.

BBM was supposed to go cross platform in 2010/11 and actually replace SMS in a deal with carriers that would have monetised the new platform. Mike L delayed it because he didn't agree, his pet Thorsten cancelled it upon becoming CEO and now 18 months later BBM is limping out on to other platforms as a death throw with no guaranteed revenue stream from it. Appalling.

Posted via CB10

Kiddo2050

He's saying "Does anybody here know what consumers want because I sure as hell don't!".

LOL'd at that one, thanks!

SK122387

YES! This would be even better than Fairfax.

I have a feeling that Mike and Doug would be the two last people that would like to see BlackBerry split up and sold off in parts.

This would be cool if it becomes true.

NickMcBride

My thought exactly! I feel like BlackBerry would stay the same just a bit smaller than before and a more enterprise based focus!But I'd be very happy with that! And would love to see a better offer on the table for us shareholders! I think Mike L coming back could actually be a good thing and way better than a foreign entity! He a smart man and BlackBerry has a lot going for it even though there's also a lot of issues!

Posted via CB10 (My amazing Q10)

revtech

I originally put +3000, but I'll see your +10000 and raise you another ;-)

John Pawling

Very well stated. Mike surely feels pride in his creation and doesn't want to see BlackBerry broken up.

Posted via CB10 1.4.2 on Z10 10.1.0.4181 on the Rogers Network

imcurved

True. Number one: BlackBerry is Mike's baby. Number two: if Mike wanted to break BlackBerry into pieces and sold them, he doesn't have to enter the picture.

jay_men

Good for them. Hope it works out with BlackBerry still being a standalone company.

z10 rocks

Maybe he did fuck up on the end, but the man invented the company, give the man some credit, the man is a self made billioner, have to respect that, I lost money on stock, but give respect when it's due, that's his babe, he might keep the company together at least, not like the rest that will auction it in pices

Posted via CB10

revtech

Have you been hanging with Alec Saunders? ;-)

Playbook007

Hats Off! Amen!

Trolls should be forced to use BB10!

Anonymous2039

Why is it that the foul language is censored only sometimes?

Posted via CB10

BeautyEh

Awesome. I really think almost anything is better than a breakup and the best parts being sold to the likes of Google.
Opinions here about Mike L are probably mixed, but even so you couldn't deny the poetic/karmic justice of such a thing, if it were to go through.

martinjdub

Do you hear the Jaws theme?

Posted via CB10

Tumacana

Nope...But I hear the fat lady singing!

DocDRM

If this happens, there goes the CrackBerry inside scoop. Mike L will lock it down again: "It would have worked if it hadn't been for you meddling BLOGGERS"

Posted via CB10

echo5-7

OMG
He owns shares and does make an offer? I'm betting on that he will pull his offer after the shares value came to thee level where he wants to sell them and will have sold them.

Posted via CB10

Playbook007

He could have sold them for 18 bucks a while back. Don't think this is his intention. Usually an ex owner will step back in when he sees his baby being mishandled. Mike is a smart man. He knows there is huge potential with QNX, BB10, BES10. It needs a leader, and someone who wants it to succeed more than anything else.

Trolls should be forced to use BB10!

imcurved

Playbook007, I can't agree more. QNX, BB10, and BES10 are full of potential. What Mike has more than anybody is the passion he has for BlackBerry. He's probably very sad for the state of BlackBerry is in right now.

scribacco

Yup..so far those services have prove nothing other than being a failure

jordandrews90

Very good news, thank you Chris!

Posted via CB10

Zmain

Some people never gives UP!!

How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning!

michaelshanoss

Isn't he the reason BlackBerry s in this position in the first place? I don't see BlackBerry going anywhere if this guy owns it again

Posted via CB10

Superfly_FR

Let the party begin ...
This whole story is amazing.

TioPepe78

Maybe he read your post and he's looking for you now!!! LOL just kidding, your post was excellent and this answered the question I posted there... would he be willing to come back? well there it is, he is!!!

vlcmfreak7

Agreed. I thoroughly enjoyed his post.

Posted via CB10

PatrickMJS

Hopefully Mike Lazaridis will get rid of Boulbien and put Kev in charge of BlackBerry Marketing.

Posted via CB10

Matt Thimbs

Kevin, what are your sources saying?

Crackberrykills

Of course you called it, CBK. You da man! Now, will this come to fruition or is it just another tease?

timmy t

Can you please tell us what your score is on calling things and them coming true?

BionicKris

Yes you did! Let's see what happens next in the book of BlackBerry...

Posted via CB10

crunch27

Totally agree. It would be good to see the Company move forward. They have some good phones now. I have had my Q10 for a month now and I absolutely love it. My wife wants to get a white Z30 next week from Bell if they are available.

Posted via CB10

qwerty4ever

If Mike Lazardis buys BlackBerry and takes it private there is some possibility that BlackBerry will be rebooted. BlackBerry 10 running on smartphones and tablets can bring mobile computing to reality, not mere marketing words.

Posted via CB10 from the BlackBerry Z10

oldron

Please no. Don't let him or any of the old guard near Blackberry. They sat on their proverbials and watched the rest of the world take their market share away because they thought they were invincible. BB needs risk takers now if it already isn't too late.

Anonymous2039

If you crossed the street without looking and got hit and severely injured by a bus, I think you'd remain on your guard and check both ways before crossing next time.

Just sayin'

Posted via CB10

scribacco

don't worry it won't happen he does not have the money to take it over

ANTIABE

I like Mike!

Posted via CB10

greatwiseone

Odd that he's not joining the Fairfax bid. Not sure if Mike L is really who they need but it's better than breaking the company up...hopefully he will see the light and just join in the Fairfax bid.

Posted via CB10

drcrane

The filing specifically states that they may join other bids. Together with Fairfax they already own almost 20%... that's $1B less financing needed.

Posted via CB10

digitalman101

Let's hope for the better. I want bb10 to keep going, even if market for enterprise.

It will be a pity, if BlackBerry gets split into pieces... torn to pieces.

Posted via CB10

ibpluto

Lets hope he's learned to have a bit more open mind ..........

terminatorx

Open mind for what? One one hand you have people criticizing and blasting RIM for underestimating the iPhone and not launching something better to compete in the consumer space. Then you have other people criticizing with equal strength saying they should not have strayed from their core area of enterprise. So what is it? Damned if you do, damned if you don't. The saying is so true, you can't make everyone happy.

FryBerry

Yes, he was the Co-Ceo when BlackBerry started the decline, and fell way behind. BUT with most public companies, it is the board that is truly running the show. He built BlackBerry from the ground up on his own, and I do believe he can do it again. I would rather of someone like Mike L. then Prem, who admittedly does not know tech.

Posted via CB10

beamolite

Many seem to forget it was Mike who built the company from scratch. Did he make mistakes? Yes he did but I feel he always had the best interests of the company in mind.

You can pry my BlackBerry from my cold, dead hands.

ANTIABE

http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mike_Lazaridis just remember who start this amazing soulmates devices

Posted via CB10

buccaneer54

He can have mine for 4.50 if it will keep BlackBerry intact.

Posted via CB10

lnichols

So his hand picked successor finishes off the job he started running the company into a ditch. His buddy Prem sets up a sweet severance deal for hand picked successor and puts in a BS low ball bid after the company completely hypes up and blows BBM cross platform rollout. Now Lazaridis is looking to buy his baby back. Sorry but this all seems to be going according to plan to me and investors are getting the hose.

Posted via CB10

Anonymous2039

It's the stock market. You made that decision, now quit complaining.

Posted via CB10

oilgeo10

Yeah, if there are no other bids and Watsa has backing for 30 - 35%, Lazaridis would probably throw his group's 20% behind it.

Posted via CB10

KenFletch

Well. His options are , sell too Watsa at $9 if that does forward or join Watsa. He(they) clearly don;t want to do that which means he belives it is worth more than $9. Does he know that for sure. Together these 2 have almost as much of BBRY as Watsa and if they both say no then that deal can't go forward. They are declaring they don't want to partner with him either.

Who can get the big pension plan owners to partner with them? ANy existing big owner could join them in going private by contributing shares and/or joining the purchase.

Also this can prevent another bidder from buying and dismantling the company.

Things just became a lot more interesting. Perhaps I'll get a little more for my little pile of shares ( the markets bumped up 10 cents on this info).

noelcwoodward

Things are getting interesting!

Posted via CB10

Zmain

Maybe, just maybe this time Mike will finally listen to BlackBerry staff and it's customers, just maybe?

How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning!

fearmantis

keep moving BB!

BB Z10 Rocks!

koool1

Do I hear $10/share??

Posted via CB10

trwrt

If they planned to offer $10 why wouldn't they be buying shares at $8 right now?

KenFletch

How do you know they aren't?

trwrt

It says right in the article that they haven't bought any shares recently.

KenFletch

jeeze, serious much , you wrote "right now", the article says "recently", I guess I should've put a smiley ;)

wout000

Probably more like $9.25 if the deal from Fairfax stands.
I'd just wait it out and see Fairfax default on the deal for financial reasons and then launch an offer for $8.
Business is business and I'd be wanting it cheap so i can sell high once it's fixed.

Tumacana

More like $8.50. Lets see.

scribacco

Good luck fixing it..they would be better off creating an all new company

BY923

Good news, especially in light of today's news re: the higher likelihood of a breakup than a Fairfax deal. I was just thinking this morning, if Fairfax can't come up with the funding, where's Lazaridis? He's not gonna let his baby be cut in half. Yeah, Laziridis blew it over the years, but he's not an unintelligent man. Quite the contrary. He knows he's a Harvard MBA case study on how to destroy a company. But I bet he's mulled over a thousand times what he *should* have done differently over the past 5 years. I bet he's read over every news article, blog post, analyst report on why BB failed. I bet he's even listened to Kevin's analysis w/ Rene on the podcast. I prefer Lazaridis, failures and all, over Fairfax. But either one of the two over being broken off into pieces! I say this with a knot in my stomach, but Go Mike! Save BlackBerry and resurrect it!

yzerken

Things ARE getting interesting for sure…….here are my thoughts
Mike “created” the BlackBerry as a business tool and that was always what it was meant to be. The Smartphone spawned from the original BlackBerry when they started adding features like phone, camera, and media capabilities. Remember the Pearl 8100? BlackBerry had their focus on security and control of mobile devices on the Enterprise and they did/do that very well. The consumer side was still into flip phones……. People started buying the BlackBerry devices because of all the additional functionality long before there was an iPhone.
History says the company went from $240,000,000 in 2002 to $19,900,000,000 in fiscal year end 2010. What other company can you show me with growth like that in eight years? It’s easy to make mistakes when things are happening so fast. The big mistake was throwing more and more people at it rather than taking a step back which put them in the position where they are now with thousands of employees they don’t need. One little tidbit that may interest you is that only $900,000,000 of the income came from the consumer side of the business. Enterprise is still what BlackBerry is all about as $19,000,000,000 in income proves. That’s where the focus should stay and if you’re a BlackBerry lover we’d be glad to have you on board.
People seem to forget that Apple was close to going out of business until Microsoft (Bill Gates) bailed them out (invested) to keep competition with Windows in place. Steve Jobs was the genius who started the iPhone fad that rocketed Apple back into profitability. If Apple only had the Mac to depend on they would have went away long ago. The fact that they focused on “consumer” business and marketed their products that way proves that they knew BlackBerry had the Enterprise business locked up.
Apple and Samsung can continue their dominance of the consumer market. Samsung assumed the number one position over iPhone which proves to me that iPhone purchases are a choice that can easily be swayed to something else. If BlackBerry cleans up the negativity (teenagers working at carrier storefronts don’t help) and markets the BB10 devices the way they should be I can see iPhone sales dropping to where they should be. The BB10 devices are far superior to anything Apple may have and when it comes to business tools and security they kill the Androids as well. The Z30 will blow your mind with its graphics and speed alone.
One last thing…….There are over 100,000 apps on BlackBerry World. I would think choosing one flashlight app with only five to choose from would be much easier than choosing from maybe 500 that are available for the iPhone and/or Android. Apps that we can use are much more important than the argument that there are 500,000 apps for my iPhone.
You go Mike! I hope you can make it work!

4ron

This could be the right solution... and redemption for Lazaridis.

Tompire

I would lend him some money!!!

Posted with my Z10 or Q10! ..or on my Z30..soon. ;)

daniel337

Great, really cool news!

Should keep on the good BB10 series with all at it - and do NOT make the mistakes from the past.

And: No sellings of small pieces (destroy for money) of the company (so I hope!!), instead a fan of this architecture and a well known "old" insider of the company would be back again.

Go for it, Mike!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

NFLPLAYBOOK

This is the best proposition to take BlackBerry private. I could see this acquisition passing all the hurdles that the buyout would enable. For the first time in weeks BlackBerry now has a reasonable chance of moving forward in a positive way.

Zmain

If Steve Jobs can do it, why not ML.

How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning!

2clever

YES! Go Mike. This is what BB needs - not so much someone who wants to get a return on an investment, even if it means chopping up the company, but someone who wants BB to succeed, and who will then make some money as a result of that. I have faith that Mike is driven to see BB succeed - he doesn't need the money - so from what I see, we should back him all the way. I bet he wants nothing more than to see BB survive, so of course he will try not to repeat the mistakes of the past - he's certainly not stupid. Good news!

laketrout73

Chris, Kevin, Adam, Bla1ze, Simon... you guys are way overdue for a podcast.

Z10 STL100-3 | 10.2.0.1767 | Bell via CB10

Anonymous2039

That's comparing two different kinds of fruit: apples and blackberries, so the comparison doesn't work.

Posted via CB10

scienceboy

The doomsayers need to relax. BlackBerry is going nowhere but forward. The whole industry is going through huge changes and the players of today will be entirely different tomorrow... but BlackBerry has the product profile and cash cow niche to be in it for the long haul.

Mike and Premier are interested for very good reasons. That's why they are rich and the analysts that have dismissed BlackBerry are wannabes.

Posted via CB10

scribacco

$2B ain't that much in the tech world..Samsung spent over $9B in advertisement in 2012

clowrym

This is an awesome announcement!! if anything goes down, I would prefer this one!!

graze81

Keep moving......backwards?! Downwards?!

dosto

One would think the more competing bids the better. What would really be bad is if Blackberry said "we're for sale" and no one wanted to buy it.

mmcpher

Won't begin to pretend that I know enough about it to say if this leak of Mike L 2.0 is going to happen or will ultimately be a good thing. I do know that more interest, more interested parties, is generally better. And the popular narrative that either Mike and/or Jim were just lucky idiots whose true natures and capabilities outlasted and finally killed their luck, and very nearly the company, is dubious at best. RIM was no accident no product of a series of strokes of luck. Whenever a storied company falters, there is so much at stake that its easy to find whisperers against nearly anyone, so I never place too much stock in whisper campaigns. A record of achievement and success like RIM's doesn't mean that its founders can never falter or that the qualities that brought them once to the top will last or automatically regenerate as needed. It does mean that those guys had and have something that enabled them to once rework the world. That doesn't mean they can do it again, but it also shouldn't disqualify them if they still have the fire in their bellies.

ikalinin

that would be "Fregin" amazing. i honestly dont care about where BB is today. if this is True, and he is back in the mix, things will get awesome, fast!

lets hope this is true and ready to happen.

xBURK

He may have made mistakes, but you can't forget he created BlackBerry. This is the best scenario I can think of at this point in time. Great news!

Posted via CB10

Spades1234

As long as he only comes back as an engineer and stays out of running the company.

10

Whyareallthegoodnamestaken

It seems there's more interest in the company than previously was thought...

Posted via CB10

cyprusfire

I like people commenting about the mistakes he made and how everyone has an opinion about what went wrong. Seriously? If you're so damn smart, why on earth are you not some billionaire that I'm reading about in the news?? That's right, because you're not that smart so stfu!!! No one cares about your opinion is the nice way to break it to you.

No one said that if Mike buys BlackBerry that he would be the one running the show. He could easily hire much younger talent that he believes would have a vision of where this vague term of "mobile computing" is going. That deadbeat Heins has gone MIA like a coward. He has no spine to be a leader and take this company forward.

Anyway, a simple way of looking at the big picture is to think of Steve Jobs and Apple. Do you really think that Steve knew anything about computer code or programming? No he did not, but he had an eye for talent and knew how to motivate and inspire his team to bring out the best of them. To put this into perspective, if you read the article about the "rise and fall of BlackBerry", you would have noticed that Mike knew the iPhone was a threat, but it seemed like he didn't know how to effectively combat the iPhone back in 2007. At the same time, BlackBerry was reaching a peak in sales and status.

So please don't be quick to judge the guy.

Posted via CB10

ikalinin

I see your point, but you are mistaken about Steve Jobs. he was a really smart guy, and knew exactly what he wanted and how he wanted to do it.

Playbook007

Steve Jobs had his rough years, took his lumps and got smarter. However he was also ruthless to many people. Just saying!

Trolls should be forced to use BB10!

Kiddo2050

At that level there are no dummies saying he's smart is like say he wore black shirts. Who cares. Apple is a media darling, yet it's market share and margins are falling in everything they produce. Outside North America no one gives a shit about Apple. Canadian and Americans are Apple suckers, and live in an Apple Bubble. Just think iPhone has over 40% market share in the US and below 15% world wide. Considering the size of the US market this means Apple aint doing so hot where people don't speak English as a first language.

dorbit

Just pointing out that Mike was the guy (with Jim) who put Heins in the top job.

TomCam2710

Could you tell us what can be the future of BlackBerry if he acquires the company?
I'm a bit afraid as he didn't want to add multimedia in BlackBerry phones...

Posted via CB10 on the Z10 from France.

M--Canuck

That would be fricking AWESOME take it back and resurrect it ... this potential deal has the blessing of the Canadian Government written all over it.

Posted via CB10

The Aficionado

Mike L is a a smart man

I also think he is wise enough to have learned from his mistakes in the past

Mike and Jim were good ceos, they were slow to react to the iPhone yes, but if they were still in charge the company would not be in this position today.

They would be getting more revenue from bbm / sms 2.0 and from deals with the Chinese government.

Posted via CB10

rajbir01

+1. They did create an amazing company. Unfortunately, they did not react fast enough to full screen phones.

Posted via CB10

BlackJack-21

I couldn't care less of who owns the company, as long it's not dismantled as some analysts pointed out.

I like to see a sale of the whole company and focus on software. Lots of potential with BB10.

Posted via CB10

nick canada

This is great news for BlackBerry, if everyone in the know is interested in buying the company even at its current state it must have something up its sleeve

Posted via CB10

deltact

It would be a good thing. I think he's learned his lesson about being complacent about the competition. He knows he'd have to innovate, which is something he's good at.

Posted via CB10 on Z10

mkiiw

Anything Better than Break up the company, sell the pattern , and massive layout off in Canada. Let others company buy the pattern in a cheap price, and hire the smart talents. Look at Nortel, it happens once just awhile ago... .. it is sad example. It does not require to be happens again...

OMGitworks

Chris, thanks for getting this right and being accurate so quickly. The G&M had it all wrong, saying it was 16%. Hopefully nobody traded on that bad info. The street stayed calm and got it right and so did you. It's nice to see a professional person who knows how to read a 13D and not post misleading info. Nice job!!!

givemebbornothing

At the very least I'm interested to see where this goes.

Posted via CB10

moxy

No way. He put the company in it's current state and has shown he is incapability of righting the sinking ship.

GaDgEtMoN

If he does succeed in taking it back, he should hire @ Crackberry Kevin to be their ambassador. Or at the very least, provide his input on product development. :)

Posted via CB10

pvphooman

BlackBerry could use a dip into the Lazarus Pits.
I'm all for it. Keep BlackBerry intact, bring it back to life and sustain it. There is a market for BlackBerry smartphones and OS10. I believe in BlackBerry but it will take some more time for people to catch on.

-aBBuser on .1791 STL3

sebstarr

Keep it together BlackBerry! So far I'm liking this the most out of all the recent options!

Posted via CB10

HUNTZODIAC

There's Mike L I knew he wouldn't let the company he created get broken up...and give this man credit he basically invented the smartphone

Posted via CB10 with my Z10

jackwaldon

Wow. It seems like every couple of days it's a wildly different story come out. I'd say it's an emotional roller coaster, but I am trying not to get emotional about it. But, I have to admit I do.

Anyway, it will be really interesting to look back in a couple of months and see which scenarios play out. Until then, I am actually starting to enjoy the roller coaster a bit. But then again, I don't own any stock.

LeroyP09

Wow and this is the guy that was completely against the BB10 touch and said they wouldn't make it as BlackBerry needs to stay qwery keyboard

Zed 10 - 10.2.0.1047. In your face VZW

DaSchwantz

IMO this is all in the plan.

Posted via CB10

Justin Carnegie

I think this could be really good news! From my vantage point (albeit the cheap seats) the company started losing focus when a former co-CEO was hell bent on acquiring a hockey team. His eye left the company. Perhaps, with Mike back at the helm with greater focus, a privately owned company, 45% fewer employees, and a killer OS, Blackberry will do an about face! - as opposed to a face plant!

jackwaldon

My company runs about half BlackBerries and half iPhones. We have about 65 total. For the iPhones, we use Mobile Iron. But, the integration between Mobile Iron and iPhone sucks. I'm sorry, but that's just my opinion. The support is weak and when bugs come out we get to bounce back and forth between Mobile Iron and Apple. And, I always here "we can't keep the user from doing that, all we can do is stop the email if they do". Maybe that's not what everyone else experiences, but that is what I have seen.

My only point is... I think there is a lot to be said for single vendor solutions. When the same company is providing secure connectivity, device management, and the device itself, you get certain synergies and it becomes more reliable over all.

That's not the whole picture, you also need a device that the users will accept - more to the point, want. But, I think that in BB10 they have achieved that. But, it does take time. But, how can you sell to the enterprise when there are all these news stories saying that you are going to be out of business?

My point is just that there is a market for their product & they have a good product for the market. They just need to stabilize and going private would give them the opportunity to do that.

jackwaldon

we have bes10 for our bb10 devices. we will probably looking at using it for iphones at some point in time, but we still have mobile iron paid up for a while.

Nate650

According to this article from February:

http://www.celebritynetworth.com/articles/entertainment-articles/10-tech...

"Michael Lazaridis' net worth has dropped $4.09 billion to $210 million."

So how is this possible? Is Doug Fregin taking care of the rest?

farskija

Didn't he just build some big, expensive building somewhere for some purpose?

Posted via CB10

Playbook007

Yes a nano research center in Waterloo at the University.

Trolls should be forced to use BB10!

DaSchwantz

Do 'users' (i.e. employees) also get to dictate which brands of workstations, company cars, and office equipment they use? Maybe to a minor degree, but if the company is paying for it, that's where the buck stops.

Posted via CB10

transportin

I'm all for him to take over the company. The guy is pouring a bucket of money into quantum computing. Why wouldn't he do the same for his first love, blackberry/RIM.

Posted via CB10

mathking606

He can't be any worse than Thorsten Heins. I fine as long as they keep the company still making hardware and make sure they have long term capital to invest into the company to allow it to recover.

DonMarcello

Everybody makes mistakes and Mike Lazaridis certainly made some mistakes of epic proportions in the past. Most people learn from their mistakes and Mike appears to be a much wiser man now as a result of the harsh lessons he was taught. It looks like he's seeking redemption for himself and the company he co founded and built by buying it back and correcting his past mistakes. Everyone deserves a second chance, this is his.

dracolnyte

hope mike gets his company back, boot heins and ban jim from coming back

mikeycollins13

Not sure I can trust the judgement of a man who
1) Destroyed BBRY
2.) Gave the keys of the castle to lying psychopath [Heins] who shredded almost every last bit of value left.

That being said, he has a better shot at this than Watsa.

Thunderbuck

Mikey, dude, you seriously need to get your meds reviewed. They're not working.

Heins is not a "lying psychopath". He's a great engineering/logistics guy. He's NOT a product guy, and I agree they should have found stronger product people for the C-suite before BB10 actually launched.

In the meantime, Mike L. probably cares about the long-term prospects of the company more than anyone else on the planet, and I'm WAAAAY more critical of Jim B's role in BB's decline. Have some faith, man!

VR6

Better than BBRY getting chopped up. Hope things pan out for all the BBRY loyalists out there! This story kind of reminds me of the Dell saga.

niss63

It could be a "Steve Jobs" comeback, or it might be getting into bed with the devil. At this point, I don't care as long as BlackBerry continues to exist and further develops their platform.

I do hope that Mr. Lazaridis realizes that with the advent of BYOD, the enterprise sector is shrinking rapidly. To be competitive in enterprise means being competitive in the consumer side.

Saif Choudhri

At this point , anyone stepping in is positive. I just hope the founders, if successful, come wearing jeans and short sleeves as BlackBerry is not the king of hill but rather at bottom of the pit. If there is any hope of BlackBerry turnaround, the culture at BlackBerry has to change. They can start by bringing back The spirit and name of Research In Motion.

Posted via CB10

terminatorx

Great news, I welcome and respect it. Without these guys there would never have been a RIM or BlackBerry in the first place.

rjkolo

Well if that happens we can kiss BlackBerry good bye for good. I see him breaking up and selling it in pieces.

Posted via CB10

duboisstephane0

In any case, we all seem to be on the edge of our seats :)
What 's' next? Who will suddenly appear wanting to purchase or bargain for BlackBerry ???

Exciting :)

Posted via CB10

gillaz

BB need a fresh start. Fresh ideas. That means it shouldn'tnt be bought by anyone that has contributed towards its decline over the past few years

mikeycollins13

THUNDERBUCK:
No meds can cure the abuse wrought by the lies spread by Heins about the health of the company he ran.

No meds can cure the damage done by his egotistical vision of mobile end computing yady yadida, that neither you, I,Nor anyone in this forums understands...because it has no meaning.

No meds can cure the anger of hearing Heins actually bought a Global Challenger in JULY!!! After the earnings call when he knew his company was in flames and he was planning MASS LAYOFFS.

The man is simply a disgrace. He deserves to be held up as the role model of glutinous self ingratiating tech visionaries gone wrong.

Posted via CB10

jupiter8

One more time in English, please.

jupiter8

This is great news. Nice call Kevin.

BlackBerry has so much potential, not not only compete but be on top again one day. Coming from Android, I'm amazed how much of an improvement BB10 is. And its a young OS. With a visionary at the helm, they can battle for not only number 3 spot, but I think number 2 is within reach.

If BlackBerry stays together and gets good leadership, don't underestimate where they can go. Keep moving.

spencerdl

Hummm, not really sure how to comment on this........nevermind

Gunner24

Hey Chris any idea why half the media is reporting they own 8% combined, while others are saying Mike owns 8% alone and Fernstien another 8 percent?

Posted from my Q10 on the West Coast

web99

Mike Lazaridis did have his chance with BlackBerry and when he finally stepped down in early 2012 the company was a shadow of its former self, in complete turmoil with massive losses and rapidly losing market-share. If he had the answers to turn the company around, then was his time to rise to the occasion. Now almost 2 years later, the company is pretty much in the same state. For the people who want him back, what do you think Mike Lazaridis can or will do differently to deserve another chance?

xmasberry

Hoo boy. I see both pros and cons to this idea, particularly as it relates to Mike L.

Pro - You aren't going to find anyone more passionate about Blackberry and I suspect that he would be more determined to keep Blackberry as a single entity as opposed to piecing it out.

Con - I fear the game passed him by. He was part of the problem when Blackberry didn't respond effectively to the iPhone and he was a big part of creating the Blackberry culture of overpromising and underdelivering.

Pro - At least when he was still at the helm, they started putting the pieces together of what should be a powerhouse solution. RIM's enterprise chops combined with QNX's OS skills dressed up with TAT's visual/UI abilities. What else do you need?

Con - Execution was not a strong suit in the latter part of his tenure and those issues have continued. Marketing and brand hype haven't gone well either. Is Mike the guy to solve those issues? Unless he has changed, I don't know that he is.

Now, to be fair, he may not be looking at a buyout in order to take over as CEO again. If he is looking to act solely as the private equity purchaser then that would hopefully buy Blackberry the time necessary to turn this thing around without as much external negative scrutiny. If that is the role that he is going to take, that would be tremendously valuable. It's tough to pour your full passion into execution and creativity if you are constantly worried about getting fired or the company getting hacked to pieces. If he could provide the cushion to say "Together we are going to right this ship or go bankrupt trying, go do what you do" then we may see Blackberry actually start over delivering for a change.

Otech#CB

Hahaha Back from the grave. :p

Posted via CB10

Matt J

Lazaridis is responsible for BB10 and all the current technology at BlackBerry. Heins was the whip and a bad one at that. Mike was a visionary just like Steve Jobs. Bring back Mike.

BB10Funding

First line of business ...FIRE THOR ...HIRE KEVIN

ZaksEngines

Go Mike.

Posted via CB10

YTDW2000

With Mike Lazaridis, the man will go to his grave before he'd allow BlackBerry to be torn apart piece by piece.

Let's just hope he has finally seen the light on touch screen devices and their place within the BlackBerry family.

Sent from my BlackBerry Z10

AnotherBillJ

Wow, this report hit me right out of left field!

Without a doubt (and you can argue it 'til we're all blue in the face, I really don't care), this is THE best outcome for the company. Mike L. started the company from scratch and turned it, with some help, into the once powerful BlackBerry. The man is a genius and if he once again took over the reigns knowing what he knows now, there would be no stopping BlackBerry.

However this plays out, the BlackBerry saga would make for a great movie. Hollywood, are you listening?

tbitar

I think that it is great news he would keep BlackBerry together I would hope

Posted via CB10

miktro

Mike the man with the passion to make BlackBerry on top again.

Posted via CB10

thegreatsaint

Can anyone show me any decisions he made that were wrong? He was usually right in terms of hardware. It was the software and the capabilities of that software that were outdated. They couldn't steer the ship on a new course. Blackberry had grown too big too fast.

Now that someone else has stepped in, initiated a turn around strategy that involved a tonn of really tough choices (layoffs, product write offs, etc), he can come in and get back to the work of making good hardware.

Posted via CB10

jcv822

Reminds me of the Prodigal Son. BlackBerry is similar to the child he let go. You can never let go of something you have created and watch it grow through the good and bad, the rise and fall. It will eventually return. To prominence? Time will tell.

Z10

givemebbornothing

Hey mike make it right... oh snap wrong mike. none the less I think it could apply.... :)

Posted via CB10

locke7

Whatever happens I just don't want them to break Ip the company!!! BlackBerry 10 is the bes os by far. All you BlackBerry users I ask you to go into your carriers and try out an iphone... the os is not smooth; it does not flow; it consists of a patchwork like system that is not ergonomic at all. This swipe gesturing that BlackBerry has come up with is revolutionary and extremely fast. The issue is still that people don't know that BlackBerry is any different than it used to be or they just haven't tried the new devices!!!

Posted via my Q10.

ewakil12

Definitely the best for BlackBerry right now. Let's not forget that he built this Empire and maybe he will rebuild it again! Let's hope for the best.

d_chosen1

Mike L please buy us shareholders out at $16 thanks and your welcome

mhart343

Quantum Computing Chips I'm BlackBerry?

Posted via CB10

Mic_JP

Surprise in a few more weeks :) Who likes a challenge....we will know more come November....QNX on a mobile platform=brilliance :D
I'm keeping my Z10...love it!

White STL100-4 OS10.2.0.1761

RonBHolmes2nd

Mike is the best bet for those of us that want to see BlackBerry live on in Waterloo. This I have no doubt about but you might have to live here to fully understand.

Posted via CB10

GRojasHruska

You know what, I want to hear your perspective, actually, I'm curious, tell us of the awesomeness! NOW!

jgrobertson

OMG. . . The man does not have a clue.

trinichindian

How can I say this...NoooooOooooooooooOooooooooOooooooooo

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