BlackBerry resumes bid to buy Indian-owned company

February 4th, 2009 - 12:31 pm ICT by IANS  

Toronto, Feb 4 (IANS) BlackBerry maker Research In Motion (RIM) has launched a fresh bid to acquire Indian-owned Certicom Corp. which supplies vital technology for its smart phones.Based in Mississauga on the outskirts of Toronto, Certicom, which is headed by CEO Karna Gupta, is a global leader in encryption technology used by RIM to build secure messaging system in its BlackBerry smart phones.

Late last year, RIM made a $66-million “unfriendly” offer directly to Certicom’s shareholders for its takeover after it failed through talks with its management.

However, Certicom succeeded in getting court injunction on the grounds that RIM had violated non-disclosure agreements signed by the two sides during the takeover talks.

But the BlackBerry maker is back within two weeks to stop Certicom’s friendly takeover by California-based VeriSign Inc.

In a statement Tuesday, Certicom said it has received an offer of $131 million or $3 a share in cash from RIM - which is double RIM’s earlier hostile bid for takeover.

The RIM’s offer is 43 percent more than VeriSign’s offer, the statement said, adding that it (the offer) is “open for acceptance until noon on Feb 12, 2009″.

The Certicom statement said its special committee of independent directors will review the BlackBerry offer, in consultation with its financial and legal advisors because of the company’s legal obligations under its agreement with VeriSign Inc.

“If Certicom’s board of directors determines that the RIM Offer is a superior proposal as defined in the VeriSign agreement, VeriSign will have the right, but not the obligation, to offer to amend the terms of the VeriSign arrangement within a period of five business days,” the statement added.

Certicom supplies the crucial wireless technology not only to the BlackBerry maker, but also to Motorola, IBM and Texas Instruments Inc.

RIM, which has been become a world leader in secure wireless communication thanks to Certicom’s encryption technology, is willing to go to any lengths to buy this crucial company.

Set up in 1985, Certicom is today the sole leader in this crucial technology. The company’s shares rose slightly on the Toronto stock exchange on RIM’s takeover bid.

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