clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Samsung in talks to buy BlackBerry, Reuters reports

New, 65 comments

Reuters is reporting that Samsung has recently approached BlackBerry about a potential acquisition deal. It wouldn't be the first time the two have chatted about joining together; in 2013, rumors circulated that BlackBerry was approaching Samsung, Google, and other companies in hopes of finding a buyer. But it sounds like this latest conversation is the other way around: Samsung apparently has a sudden interest in buying BlackBerry to the tune of $7.5 billion, despite the Canada-born company's deep struggles in the smartphone wars and ailing market share. BlackBerry's stock immediately shot up after news of the most recent talks spread.

BlackBerry Samsung spike

BlackBerry denies it's in talks with Samsung

While Samsung may be interested in talks, BlackBerry claims it's not in discussions with the South Korean phone maker. "BlackBerry is aware of certain press reports published today with respect to a possible offer by Samsung to purchase BlackBerry," reads a prepared statement. "BlackBerry has not engaged in discussions with Samsung with respect to any possible offer to purchase BlackBerry. BlackBerry's policy is not to comment on rumors or speculation, and accordingly it does not intend to comment further." Shortly after it released its statement, BlackBerry's after-hours share price dropped back down 15 percent.

Despite the denials, Samsung may still be interested in a potential buyout. After falling short with its revamped smartphone line — meant to stand toe-to-toe with Android and iPhone — BlackBerry has recently made a conscious decision to fall back on old strengths like a class-leading physical keyboard. That's something nearly all of its competitors lack, but even the BlackBerry Classic isn't reversing the company's fortunes. Samsung is said to be more interested in BlackBerry's patent portfolio than its actual hardware. Could we eventually see a Galaxy smartphone paired with a fantastic keyboard? Or is Samsung looking to lock down the enterprise segment and beef up its security software? Reuters says executives from both companies met last week about a deal.

Update (5:40PM ET): article updated to include a statement from BlackBerry denying it's in talks with Samsung.

Verge Video from CES 2015: Samsung's CES Keynote