Bloomberg just announced that BlackBerry has recently added another very smart, highly visible, institutional investor to it’s quiver. Bloomberg has reported here that the Ontario Teacher’s Pension Plan (OTPP) has recently purchased about 7.8 million shares of “BB” stock, amounting to a 1.6% stake in the company.
Although this stake in BlackBerry only amounts to about .6% of OTPP’s estimated $140 Billion in assets, this is still excellent news for any BlackBerry fan and just adds to the overall picture that big institutions are seeing value in BlackBerry and believe they are a good bet going forward.
Many of BlackBerry’s top investors are well known and highly regarded names in the investment community. Names like Prem Watsa and Fairfax Financial Holdings, Canso Investment Counsel, Brookfield Asset Management, Mackenzie Financial Cundill Investment Management, and now OTPP. I imagine OTPP is similar to CalPERS in the U.S. The California Public Employee Retirement System (CalPERS) is a behemoth whom everyone in the institutional investment community watches carefully. Recently, they divested their fund of their allocation to hedge funds and this sent a ripple through the boardrooms of many endowments and non-profits as they considered why. Ultimately CalPERS did this not because they didn’t believe in the asset class, but because at over $250 Billion in assets, they are really too big to implement it properly.
The point to all this is, smart investors look to other smart investors to see what they are doing. Many individuals will invest in Warren Buffet companies and investments merely because they believe in Buffet and believe it’s smart to mimic his decisions. Institutional investors like Buffet, Watsa, and the others listed above have access to vast resources and expertise to evaluate their investments, so if these folks are investing in BlackBerry, they must see value in the company for the long term as most of them are value players looking for stocks that have sound fundamentals and room to grow.
All in all, this is fantastic news for BlackBerry fans. Let’s all enjoy these victories as they happen. They indicate that many smart people believe BlackBerry will eventually be a really strong and profitable company and ultimately mean we will all be able to use our favorite phones for years to come!!!