UPDATE 1-BlackBerry to raise $605 mln from shareholder Fairfax, others

Fri Aug 26, 2016 2:52pm EDT
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Aug 26 (Reuters) - Troubled smartphone maker BlackBerry Ltd said it would raise about $605 million by selling convertible debentures to shareholder Fairfax Financial Holdings Ltd and other investors.

The Canadian company will also redeem on Sept. 2 roughly $1.25 billion worth of outstanding debentures carrying a coupon of 6 percent, it said on Friday.

The new debt that BlackBerry plans to issue will have a coupon of 3.75 percent and will be due in November 2020.

If all of the new debt is converted into stock, it will represent about 11.57 percent of BlackBerry's outstanding shares, the company said.

FairFax, led by well-known contrarian investor Prem Watsa, is BlackBerry's second largest shareholder with a stake of about 8.9 percent, according to Reuters data.

Once a dominant force in smartphones, BlackBerry now holds just a sliver of the global market.

BlackBerry said last month it would stop making its Classic model, raising further doubts about the future of the company's money-losing handset business as it shifts focus to software.

In July, the company unveiled a second Android-based handset, which combines Alphabet Inc's popular software and broad app catalog with its security and productivity features at a lower price.   Continued...