BlackBerry Mulls $4.7 Billion Deal to Go Private


An investor group has offered the pioneering smartphone company $9 per share.

Shares of BlackBerry Limited were halted Monday after the company received an offer from a consortium of investors who would take it private at $9 per share.

The company behind the BlackBerry smartphone that wowed Hollywood and other business executives a decade ago has fallen on hard times as Apple's iPhones, Android-powered smartphones and other competitors have gained market share with superior devices.

When the stock was halted Monday, BlackBerry shares were down 6 percent to $8.23, and the stock is down more than 65 percent over the last two years.

BlackBerry has entered into a letter of intent that could pave the way to a deal that would have a group led by Fairfax Financial pay some $4.7 billion for the company. Fairfax already owns 10 percent of BlackBerry.

A week ago, BlackBerry said it would write down about $1 billion in unsold smartphone inventory and it warned investors its quarterly earnings would fall way short of expectations.