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Lenovo hint at BlackBerry buyout

Lenovo may be in the market for a BlackBerry takeover, according to the Lenovo CEO.

Lenovo executives dismissed the rumours two months ago however it would appear they may have had a change of heart recently. CEO Yang Yuanqing spoke with a French financial newspaper in an interview published on March 11th. He said a deal for Blackberry ‘could possibly make sense.’ Although he added he would have to assess the market and Blackberry’s standing in it.

The comment from the CEO was published after a longer interview with the Les Echos newspaper which ‘touched on everything from Lenovo’s plans in the PC business to China’s economic environment to the struggles of top PC makers Dell and Hewlett-Packard. Lenovo already offers a number of smartphones that run Google’s Android mobile operating system.’ according to eweek.

Lenovo CFO Won Wai Ming said January 23rd that the company were looking at a range of possible acquisitions and that Research In Motion was one of them. The company since changed their name to BlackBerry.

At the time the news spread quickly and Lenovo officials were seen as taking back the comments. They released a statement “RIM was raised as a potential target by the journalist, and Mr. Wong repeatedly answered in a manner consistent with all of our previous statements on M&A. … Lenovo is very focused on growing its business, both organically and through M&A. When inorganic ideas arise, we explore them to see if there is a strategic fit.”

Yang Yuanqing’s comments boosted the stock price by 11 percent.

Blackberry have been struggling in recent years and have a lot riding on the success of the new range of smartphones running Blackberry OS 10. BlackBerry CEO Thorsten Heins has recently spoken out with a German newspaper saying that the Z10 handset was selling so well that it was ‘changing the tone of a strategic review of the company that is underway’.

Kitguru says: There has been talk of Blackberry selling their hardware business, licensing their software or selling the company completely. Updates as we have them.

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