Canso Investment Counsel Discloses 5.4% Passive Stake In BlackBerry Ltd (BBRY)
BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY)(TSE:BB) now has fund manager Canso Investment Counsel as its third-largest shareholder. Other large BlackBerry holders are Fairfax Financial and Primecap Management. BlackBerry is trying to make a comeback, both in the hardware and software segments. The company has released a number of smartphones, in recent times, through its manufacturing partnership with Foxconn. However, executives at BlackBerry have often cited that the company’s future is in software and services.
Debt to stock conversion
In a security filing, Canso revealed owning 5.4% of BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY)’s common shares. The fund manager participated in the $1 billion fundraiser by BlackBerry. With 5.4% equity stake in the smartphone pioneer, Canso is the third-largest investor, having converted $300 million in debt into shares.
Fairfax is another large BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY) shareholder. In a recent note to shareholders, Fairfax CEO Prem Watsa, stated that BlackBerry’s turnaround was progressing smoothly. Watsa further said that he believes BlackBerry’s CEO, John Chen, will succeed in making the company profitable again. Further to that, Watsa clarified that Fairfax does not intend to push for the sale of BlackBerry.
There were rumors that Samsung Electronics was targeting BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY) for a takeover. Fairfax also attempted to buy out BlackBerry but failed to close a deal, instead choosing to inject more money into the company to aid its turnaround.
Focus on new market segments
BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY) is attempting a turnaround on several fronts. Although the company has lost most of its market share in the smartphone space, it continues to innovate and push out new devices. The company also partnered with Foxconn, a step that enabled it to avoid impact from inventory failure. BlackBerry has pushed out devices such as the BlackBerry Passport, Classic and Leap through its collaboration with Foxconn.
However, BlackBerry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY)’s greatest focus is on the software and services businesses, where it provides solutions for secure mobile communications for companies and governments. The company recently expanded a deal with Samsung to include securing Samsung’s Knox security platform.
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