UPDATE: Spear Street Capital buying BlackBerry's Kanata real estate

The Canadian Press ~ OBJ
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The new owner of most of BlackBerry's Canadian real estate holdings says it plans to start marketing 170,000 square feet of the smartphone maker's Kanata office space once the deal closes later this year.

The BlackBerry Z10 device.

On Monday, BlackBerry said Spear Street Capital has waived a due diligence condition in its deal to buy the majority of the smartphone company's real estate holdings in Canada for $305 million.

The company first announced the sale in March, but did not identify the buyer or the purchase price at the time.

BlackBerry said the companies expect to close the sale of properties valued at approximately 80 per cent of the total later this month, with the remainder to be completed in the third quarter.

Under the deal, BlackBerry will sell more than three million square feet of space and vacant lands and lease back a portion of the properties.

Spear Street Capital president John Grassi told OBJ that the company's Kanata real estate holdings were part of the deal.

BlackBerry will continue to occupy one of the buildings on the campus while the remaining 170,000 will be put up for lease, Mr. Grassi said.

BlackBerry has been cutting costs and restructuring its business in a bid to stay alive, including a plan to eliminate about 40 per cent of the company's workforce.

However, executive chairman and chief executive John Chen has said that BlackBerry is still committed to having a strong presence in Canada.

–With a report from Jacob Serebrin

Organizations: TSX

Geographic location: Canada

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