U.S. firm buying BlackBerry real estate for $305M

American real estate holding company Spear Street Capital is snapping up no less than $305 million worth property being unloaded by smartphone maker BlackBerry Ltd.

In March, BlackBerry announced it had reached an agreement to sell a large portion of its real estate holdings as part of a plan to strengthen its balance sheet. At that time the Waterloo, Ont.-based technology company did not reveal the name of the buyer or terms of the deal. Today BlackBerry announced that Spear Street Capital LLC of San Francisco has waived the due diligence conditions attached to the negotiations.

BlackBerry said Spear Street has agreed to purchase the properties for $305 million. Both parties expect to complete the sale of properties valued at approximately 80 per cent of this total later this month. Sale of the remaining properties will be completed during the third quarter of 2014, according to a statement from BlackBerry.

Under the terms of the deal, BlackBerry will sell more than three million square feet of space as well as vacant lands. “BlackBerry will lease back a portion of the space as the company continues to have a strong presence in Canada, and Waterloo continuing as the home of its global headquarters,” the statement said.

In March this year, BlackBerry reported that it loss US$423 million on revenue of US$976 million. The company sold 1.3 million smartphones during the first quarter of 2014 compared to approximately 1.9 million in the previous quarter when it reported a loss of US$4.4 billion.

BlackBerry CEO John Chen, at that time, said he was “very pleased” with BlackBerry’s progress and execution adding that the company is “on a sounder financial footing today with a path to returning to growth and profitability.”

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Nestor Arellano
Nestor Arellano
Toronto-based journalist specializing in technology and business news. Blogs and tweets on the latest tech trends and gadgets.

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