Feeds

Sources spill CEO Heins' beans: BlackBerry 'open' to going private

But anyone got $4.8 BILLION it can borrow?

The essential guide to IT transformation

The board of BlackBerry is considering a private buyout of the company, saying that delisting would get shareholders off its back and give it freedom to move.

The rumour comes from Reuters, which reports "several sources" claiming that discussions have been had with various private equity companies, and enterprise computing houses, with a view to raising the $4.8bn it would cost to get the company formerly known as RIM off the stock exchange.

Silver Lake, the private equity firm currently involved in trying to take Dell private, is apparently in the frame. Reuters reckons that would line up BlackBerry for a collaborative deal with Dell on enterprise systems, but that seems little more than speculation.

In fact the whole going-private idea seems to be little more than a Power Point slide or two, even the newswire makes it clear that no deal is imminent and no sale is in progress, but BlackBerry - led by CEO Thorsten Heins - is getting so desperate that everything must be on the table at this point.

At its peak, in 2008, RIM was worth $84bn, which puts the current valuation of $4.8bn sharply into perspective. Given the way that the eminently competent BB10 devices have failed to set the world alight, we'd imagine that company board meetings see all manner of options discussed.

Licensing the BB10 OS is one, but it's hard to find someone who'll pay for BB10 when the nearly-as-good Android is all but free. BB10 hardware is nice, and we're expecting more devices this year, but "nice" isn't good enough to regain market dominance.

More interesting is BlackBerry's software and services side – recent efforts to extend BES to support Android and iOS, and opening BBM to those competing platforms too, have yet to bear, um... fruit. They do serve to remind us that BlackBerry is much more than a handset company, though, a distinction which could prove very important. ®

Build a business case: developing custom apps

More from The Register

next story
Assange™: Hey world, I'M STILL HERE, ignore that Snowden guy
Press conference: ME ME ME ME ME ME ME (cont'd pg 94)
Premier League wants to PURGE ALL FOOTIE GIFs from social media
Not paying Murdoch? You're gonna get a right LEGALLING - thanks to automated software
Online tat bazaar eBay coughs to YET ANOTHER outage
Web-based flea market struck dumb by size and scale of fail
Amazon takes swipe at PayPal, Square with card reader for mobes
Etailer plans to undercut rivals with low transaction fee offer
US regulators OK sale of IBM's x86 server biz to Lenovo
Now all that remains is for gov't offices to ban the boxes
XBOX One will learn to play media from USB and DLNA sources
Hang on? Aren't those file formats you hardly ever see outside torrents?
Class war! Wikipedia's workers revolt again
Bourgeois paper-shufflers have 'suspended democracy', sniff unpaid proles
'Aaaah FFS, 'amazeballs' has made it into the OXFORD DICTIONARY'
Plus: 'EE, how shocking, ANOTHER problem I face with your service'
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Solving today's distributed Big Data backup challenges
Enable IT efficiency and allow a firm to access and reuse corporate information for competitive advantage, ultimately changing business outcomes.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.