Have you noticed the stock price of BlackBerry Ltd. (TSX:BB)(NYSE:BB) recently? The stock has surged this week owing in part to some favourable news about an agreement with Microsoft Corpoaration (NASDAQ:MSFT), but does this make the one-time smartphone behemoth an opportunity for investors?
Let’s look at the announcement and what it means for BlackBerry and your portfolio.
BlackBerry’s bridge to Microsoft
Both BlackBerry and Microsoft are renowned for their software and security, with both companies having expertise in one area over another. The strategic partnership between the two announced this week takes advantage of that expertise and plays to the strengths of both companies.
The partnership as to do with a new software built by BlackBerry called BlackBerry Enterprise BRIDGE. The software allows for users of BlackBerry Dynamics to use Microsoft software seamlessly and securely across a multitude of devices, while offering a consistent experience.
Both companies share many of the same customers, many of which are the leaders in the financial, healthcare, legal, and government sectors of the economy. The aptly named BRIDGE software will help to nurture those client relationships.
In addition to the BRIDGE announcement, the deal also referenced BlackBerry Secure platform software, such as BlackBerry UEM Cloud, BlackBerry AtHoc, BlackBerry Dynamics, and BlackBerry Workspaces, which are now all available in Microsoft’s Azure Cloud platform.
What does this agreement mean for BlackBerry?
The agreement offers a foot-in-the-door type of arrangement to prospective customers that have one solution but not the other.
Companies that may have shied away from BlackBerry in recent years may reconsider BlackBerry now that the BRIDGE software provides a meaningful way to connect and collaborate with the Microsoft suite of tools.
The same could apply to former Microsoft customers that abandoned the office software suite but kept a BlackBerry mobile solution.
In other words, this agreement is all about pushing the new BlackBerry out to the market, and in a big way.
Should you invest in BlackBerry?
BlackBerry continues to move away from the former stereotype of a hardware-first company and into a software-first, cutting-edge tech company that investors should be very excited about.
BlackBerry’s asset-tracking solution, Radar, is a fitting example of taking a simple IoT solution and applying it to fixing what was a common tracking problem. Radar allows the tracking of containers, trucks, or any other tagged item by a slew of different metrics that goes far beyond the standard location-tracking services that would be expected from any other solution.
Radar’s tracking capabilities expands out to include metrics such as speed, humidity, temperature, and when the container/truck cargo doors were last opened.
Beyond asset tracking, BlackBerry is one of several leading companies investing heavily into autonomous driving, and the company is in an advantageous position over its competitors, since BlackBerry’s QNX operating system is already used in over 60 million vehicles worldwide.
BlackBerry remains one of several great tech investments that hold significant long-term prospects.
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Fool contributor Demetris Afxentiou has no position in any stocks mentioned. Teresa Kersten is an employee of LinkedIn and is a member of The Motley Fool’s board of directors. LinkedIn is owned by Microsoft. The Motley Fool owns shares of BlackBerry. BlackBerry is a recommendation of Stock Advisor Canada.