BlackBerry to sell its HO property to Spear Street Capital

Struggling Canadian smartphone maker BlackBerry Ltd yesterday revealed that real estate investment firm Spear Street Capital is the buyer of the majority of its real estate assets in Canada for C$305 million ($278 million).

The Ontario-based company had announced the sale in late March, but did not identify the buyer or the financial terms of the deal at the time. (See: BlackBerry reaches deal to sell majority of its Canadian real estate)

BlackBerry had not named the buyer, but said that the terms of the transaction would only be announced after the principal conditions were satisfied, or waived by the buyer.

BlackBerry said yesterday that Spear Street Capital had waived a due diligence condition for buying its real estate holdings.

Under the deal BlackBerry will sell more than 3 million square feet of space as well as vacant lands and lease back a portion of the space.

Much of the real estate being sold is in Waterloo, Ontario, including its head office operations comprising of 19 buildings and some vacant land.

BlackBerry, which recently changed its name from Research In Motion, had late last year agreed to sell five buildings, along with some land, to the University of Waterloo, for about C$41 million.

Blackberry, the once smartphone giant who pioneered the concept of on-the-go email, and though its pagers and phones had gained immense traction with political and business leaders in recent years, had lost its once-dominant market share to Apple Inc's iPhone and smartphones powered by Google Inc's Android operating system.