BlackBerry Is Selling Off Its Corporate Jets
Months before announcing a near $1 billion net operating loss and plans to eliminate 40 percent of its workforce, foundering smartphone pioneer BlackBerry bought a long-range private jet in which to ferry its executives around.
The second-hand Bombardier Global Express jet was delivered to BlackBerry in July, smack-dab in the middle of the gruesome fiscal second quarter of which the company warned on Friday, one that forced it to sack 4,500 employees. It was purchased for an undisclosed sum, but aircraft of its type typically command prices upward of $25 million.
Truly a poorly timed purchase for BlackBerry, which already owned two Dassault Falcon jets when it agreed to buy the Bombardier. Now, in fairness, BlackBerry says it intended the Bombardier to be a replacement for the Dassaults. But the company hadn’t sold them when it made the purchase. Indeed, it still owns them today — though not for much longer.
“Several years ago, the company bought two medium-range Dassault aircraft,” BlackBerry said in a statement. “Earlier this year the company decided to sell both planes and replace them with one longer-range aircraft. The company considered several options and selected a used Bombardier aircraft, which was eventually delivered in July. In light of the company’s current business condition, the company has decided to sell that aircraft along with the two legacy aircraft and will no longer own any planes.”
News of BlackBerry’s corporate jet purchase and the future sale of the fleet was first reported by The Wall Street Journal.