TORONTO Oct 17 Chinese personal computer maker
Lenovo has signed a non-disclosure deal to examine the
books of troubled Canadian smartphone maker BlackBerry Ltd
, the Wall Street Journal said on Thursday, quoting
Smartphone pioneer BlackBerry said in August it was
exploring strategic options that could include an outright sale.
It has received a tentative $9 a share offer from a
consortium led by its largest investor, Prem Watsa's Fairfax
Financial Holdings Ltd, which wants to buy BlackBerry
for $4.7 billion and take it private, and other companies are
also taking a look at the company's books to decide whether to
make an offer, industry sources say.
A Chinese bid for BlackBerry would likely face opposition
from the Canadian government, which vets foreign takeovers to
ensure they are in the national interest, and that they do not
threaten national security.
BlackBerry products have struggled to compete against the
Apple Inc iPhone and the numerous devices powered by
Google Inc's Android operating system.
A new line of smartphones that run on the BlackBerry 10
operating system has also failed to re-ignite sales, prompting
the company last month to announce that it would slash its
global workforce by more than a third.