BlackBerry Sells Itself for $4.7B

Fairfax Financial, the smartphone pioneer's largest shareholder, buys it
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 23, 2013 1:10 PM CDT
In this May 14, 2013 photo, Thorsten Heins, president and CEO at BlackBerry, speaks at a conference in Orlando, Fla.   (AP Photo/John Raoux, File)

(Newser) – It looks like the days of BlackBerry being an independent company are over. Trading on shares of the company was halted today when the company made it known that it had a major announcement coming. The announcement: It had signed a letter of intent to be purchased by Fairfax Financial Holdings Ltd. for $4.7 billion, or $9 a share, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Shares had been down 5.6% before trading halted, to $8.23, in the wake of Friday's news that the company would cut its staff by 40% and stop selling devices to consumers. The $9 price tag represents just 4% of Blackberry's peak share value, Journal reporter Shira Ovide tweets. Fairfax currently owns about 10% of BlackBerry, making it the company's biggest shareholder. The Canadian-based company will buy all of the company's outstanding shares. Click for more on its ill-fated company jet. (Read more BlackBerry stories.)

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