This is an interesting move by Waterloo-based BlackBerry.
The company is set to announce their Q2 financial results this Friday. They let the world know last week that it’s not going to be pretty with net losses coming in between $950 million and $1 billion, revenues of $1.6 billion and sales of 3.7 million smartphones. BlackBerry will officially release results at 7:00am EST, then an hour later was supposed to talk with analysts and investors on their earnings conference call. However…
“In light of the letter of intent agreement between BlackBerry and Fairfax Financial Holdings Limited that was signed and announced on Monday, September 23, BlackBerry has cancelled its second quarter earnings conference call and webcast that had previously been scheduled for Friday, September 27 at 8:00 a.m. The company will publish further details regarding its second quarter results in the Management’s Discussion and Analysis and consolidated financial statements, to be filed next week.”
Fairfax has made a bid to acquire BlackBerry for $4.7 billion with plans to take them private. However, the press release also noted that Fairfax is still ‘seeking financing from BofA Merrill Lynch and BMO Capital Markets.’ Prem Watsa, Chairman and CEO of Fairfax, is a reputable businessman and will most likely find a way to get the necessary funds to complete the deal – which is expected to close by November 4th. In the meantime, the LOI also states that BlackBerry is ‘entitled to go-shop’ for other deals.
BlackBerry execs probably have limited info to share, but technically until a transaction occurs, they are still very much a public company and cancelling the Q2 conference call with its shareholders and the analyst community is sending a strong message about where the company sees its future.
BlackBerry’s stock closed today at $8.01 and Fairfax is offering $9 per share (USD) if/when the deal is closed.