BlackBerry Sale to Give CEO Huge Windfall, If He Is Fired

by Christopher Freeburn | August 16, 2013 10:02 am

blackberry 630 rimm[1]Under a plan approved last month by shareholders, BlackBerry‘s (BBRY[2]) chief executive will walk away with a fortune if he steps down due to a change of ownership[3].

Thorsten Heins will receive stock awards, salary and incentive bonuses worth a total of $55.6 million if the company is sold and he departs as CEO. The value of his exit package is based on the company’s share price at the close of its fourth quarter, Bloomberg notes.

Heins would only receive a $22 million payout if he is fired without a change in the company’s ownership. He will receive $16.1 million in equity awards if his employment is terminated, but that jumps to $48 million if the company is sold and he is forced out by the new owners.

Last week, reports emerged that BlackBerry was looking for a buyer[4]. The company’s lenders, including JPMorgan Chase (JPM[5]), have reportedly been reaching out to potential suitors for almost a year without success.

BlackBerry has struggled to reclaim market share lost to Apple‘s (AAPL[6]) iPhone and smartphones running Google‘s (GOOG[7]) Android operating system. The company has bet heavily on its new BlackBerry 10 OS and Z10 smartphone[8].

Shares of BlackBerry fell almost 2% in Friday morning trading.

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  8. and Z10 smartphone:

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