BlackBerry signs brand licensing deal for smartphones with TCL Communications
While we already had heard about BlackBerry’s plans to stop manufacturing handsets, the company has now outsourced it to TCL.
BlackBerry has signed an exclusive agreement with TCL Communication to offer exclusive rights to sell BlackBerry-branded phones. Going forward, BlackBerry would end all internal hardware development and would instead focus on software development. The company plans to continue to control and develop its security and software solutions.
As part of the deal, BlackBerry will license its security software and service suite, as well as related brand assets to TCL Communication who will design, manufacture, sell and provide customer support for BlackBerry-branded mobile devices.
TCL Communication will manage all sales and distribution and serve as a global distributor of new BlackBerry-branded mobile devices along with dedicated sales teams. TCL Communication will be the exclusive global manufacturer and distributor for all BlackBerry-branded smartphones with the exception of the following countries: India, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bangladesh and Indonesia.
Speaking about the agreement, Ralph Pini, Chief Operating Officer and General Manager, Mobility Solutions, BlackBerry, said, “This agreement with TCL Communication represents a key step in our strategy to focus on putting the ‘smart in the phone’ by providing state-of-the-art security and device software on a platform that mobile users prefer and are comfortable with. TCL Communication is the natural choice to license BlackBerry’s software and brand on a global scale. We successfully partnered with them on the DTEK series of secure smartphones and we’ve been impressed with their excellence in hardware design, development and manufacturing. With our unparalleled expertise in mobile security and software and TCL Communication’s vast global reach and consumer access, we are confident that BlackBerry-branded products developed and distributed by TCL Communication will address the needs of BlackBerry users and expand the availability of BlackBerry Secure products throughout the world.”