Fairfax Holdings, the company that had tabled a preliminary $4.7 billion bid for Blackberry did not managed to buy the company but it managed to place itself strategically and reap massively should Blackberry’s new turnaround strategy work. In the new arrangement, the Blackberry board has decided not to sell the company fter reviewing the bids tabled by various companies, consortium and individuals who were interested in taking over the company. Instead, it took a $1 billion cash injection from Fairfax Holdings and other unamed investors (of which Fairfax will contribute a quarter of the amount – $250 million) and agreed to have Prem Watsa, the face and force behind Fairfax Holdings, back as a lead director of the Blackberry board and named John Chen as the new CEO and executive chairman of the company. Several other Blackberry board executives are also leaving the company thanks to the new changes.
Current Blackberry CEO Thorsten Heins is expected to depart in the next two weeks paving way for John Chen who will be Blackberry’s new CEO on an interim capacity. Reports indicate that Prem Watsa was not able to raise the $4.7 billion amount that Fairfax Holdings bid so instead it proposed an alternative that the Blackberry board was in agreement with since the said Qualcomm-Cerberus-co-founders consortium did not table an equally strong bid on time and the “strategic review” window had closed.
The injected cash is in the form of debentures that are convertible into BlackBerry shares at a price of $10.00 per share.