BlackBerry Founders Consider Takeover
Would you buy back your old and failing company?
Mike Lazaridis and Douglas Fregin, co-founders of the company now known as BlackBerry, are considering a bid that could save the embattled smartphone maker.
The pair, who own 8 percent of the stock, are weighing options to take over the mobile company, according to filings. A Securities and Exchange Commission filing revealed the two co-founders 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."
Lazaridis and Fregin have hired Goldman, Sachs & Co. and Centerview Partners LLC to assist with their review of strategic alternatives.
The co-founders also plan to "work exclusively with each other with respect to any potential acquisition of all or a portion of the assets or equity interests."
Lazaridis and Fregin founded the company, formerly known as Research in Motion, back in 1985 along with Jim Balsillie. In September, the smartphone maker announced plans to layoff 40 percent of its staff and said the company would go private.
BlackBerry has already received a bid from Fairfax Financial Holdings of Toronto, its biggest shareholder, which has tentatively offered to buy 90 percent of the BlackBerry shares it currently does not own for $9 a piece.