Following a Globe and Mail report that BlackBerry had sold 90 key smartphone technology patents to Huawei, BlackBerry CFO Steve Rai confirmed the deal yesterday at a virtual investor conference at JP Morgan.
According to the United States Patent and Trademark Office, ownership of the patents transferred to Huawei on December 23. Speaking of the deal, Steve Rai noted that it was a “very small number of patents that are no longer relevant to the business. So small sale, is not part of our recurring transaction. And certainly this was permitted under the applicable rules. “
Since 2014, when BlackBerry launched its BlackBerry Technology Solutions (BTS) business unit, they have been maximizing their efforts to license or sell some of their 38,000 owned patents including those of QNX, Certicom, Paratek and more. Still, the sale raised questions among many about Canada’s innovation strategy, citing possible national security concerns.
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