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BlackBerry Ltd Adds Two More Execs

BlackBerry Ltd (BBRY - Get Report) (BB)’s newly appointed CEO John Chen announced Wednesday that two of his former colleagues will be joining the ailing smartphone maker. Chen is assembling a solid team to bring the struggling Canadian company back in stride. He has also fired many senior BlackBerry Ltd (BBRY - Get Report) (BB) executives who were hired by the previous chief executive, Thorsten Heins.

BlackBerry CEO has experience with new hires

BlackBerry Ltd (BBRY - Get Report) (BB) hired two of John Chen’s colleagues, James Mackey and Mark Wilson. Mackey will be the head of the acquisitions team. Mark Wilson will become the vice president of marketing. James Mackey has successfully completed over 40 acquisitions while working at SAP AG (SAP - Get Report) (SAP - Get Report) FRA:SAP. Last year, he joined OpenText Corp. On the other hand, Mark Wilson worked at Sybase for many years, before moving to Avaya as its chief marketing officer.

John Chen is known to have revived the mobile and database software company Sybase, which was later acquired by the German software giant SAP AG (SAP - Get Report) (SAP - Get Report) FRA:SAP. Subsequently, Chen also headed SAP AG (SAP - Get Report) (SAP - Get Report) FRA:SAP’s mobile services business. BlackBerry Ltd (BBRY - Get Report) (BB) hired him last month as its CEO. Announcing the hiring of his two former colleagues, Chen said that he has worked with them for a long time, and they have built trusted relationships with one another. It will help BlackBerry Ltd (BBRY - Get Report) (BB)’s top management to cohesively manage restructuring of the company.

Another SAP executive joins BlackBerry

On Tuesday, BlackBerry Ltd (BBRY - Get Report) (BB) announced the appointment of John Sims as head of its global enterprise services division. His role is crucial as BlackBerry Ltd (BBRY - Get Report) (BB) aims to strengthen its enterprise business. Sims is also a former SAP AG executive, and he will be joining the Waterloo-based company in January. John Chen, who has provided little information about his turnaround plans, is expected to provide more details during BlackBerry Ltd (BBRY - Get Report) (BB)’s Q3 earnings call this Friday.

BlackBerry Ltd (BBRY - Get Report) (BB) had put itself up for sale a few months ago. But the company trashed that plan later as a deal with its largest shareholder Fairfax Financial fell apart. Instead, BlackBerry Ltd (BBRY - Get Report) (BB) raised $1 billion in convertible debentures from a consortium of investors led by Fairfax Financial.

BlackBerry Ltd (BBRY - Get Report) (BB) shares jumped 0.33% in pre-market trading to $6.08.

-By Vikas Shukla

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