BlackBerry Abandons Sale, Replaces CEO

Beleaguered Canadian smartphone maker BlackBerry abandoned its sale process Monday and simultaneously announced its CEO Thorsten Heins was being replaced. BlackBerry had a deal in place with Fairfax financial, which already owns 10% of the company’s shares to buy the company’s remaining shares for $9 each. Rather than taking the company private, Fairfax is going to inject $1B into the business as part of a convertible debt deal.

Heins took over the company in early 2012 after the company lost billions in market value and continued to erode the company’s value. Heins is being replaced by John Chen on an interim basis. Chen is formerly the chairman and CEO of database/enterprise mobile app developer Sybase which was acquired by SAP in 2010.

Chen suggested yesterday that he’ll focusing on making the company a leader in business services, but said the company has no plans to exit the smartphone business or break up the company.

The company’s stock price peaked at 2009 at nearly $90 per share. In early 2011, it was $70. Today, BlackBerry is expected to open at about $6.60 per share.  

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