BlackBerry to lobby over buyout issues

BlackBerry is preparing to lobby the Canadian government over foreign-takeover issues amid investor concerns that a domestic buyout won’t happen.

The company has registered to meet with lawmakers to discuss the Investment Canada Act, which sets rules for foreign acquisitions of local companies, according to federal lobbying documents. The government automatically reviews any takeover bid of more than $332 million.

The push comes amid speculation that Toronto’s Fairfax Financial Holdings, BlackBerry’s largest shareholder, faces long odds in putting together a homegrown bid for the company.

BlackBerry executives made the disclosure about the Investment Canada Act in the past week, according to the lobbying register. Before that, the act hasn’t been listed as a subject of interest to the company for years.

— Bloomberg News

Seagate CEO weighs software acquisitions

Seagate Technology, a maker of storage drives, is on the lookout for software acquisitions that can help it meet booming demand for cloud computing, chief executive Stephen Luczo said.

The company is determining where it has holes to fill and what to potentially buy, Luczo said in an interview. The CEO said he sees a bubble in the valuation of cloud-storage providers, which could present buying opportunities when it deflates, he said.

Western Digital, the world’s largest maker of hard-disk drives by market value, agreed last week to buy Virident Systems, a company backed by Seagate, for $685 million to expand in flash storage. Flash is a preferred technology for cloud computing because it is faster and more efficient than traditional spinning disks.

Earlier, Cisco Systems, the biggest maker of networking equipment, said it would buy Whiptail, a manufacturer of solid-state memory systems.

Seagate, which has been making products based on the needs of equipment manufacturers, is shifting its strategy to focus on technology buyers, including cloud-service providers, Luczo said. That will require software and silicon-based products, which Seagate may have to buy.

— Bloomberg News