BlackBerry adds Snap to companies its suing for patent infringement

TORONTO — BlackBerry Ltd. has added Snap Inc. to the list of companies it’s taking to court in California for alleged patent infringement.The Waterloo, Ont.-based company says in a lawsuit that Snap has infringed on intellectual property, including innovations on real-time activity location for maps, message notification techniques and methods for integrating advertising on mobile devices.The claims, which have not been proven in court, did not specify what financial compensation the company is seeking.‘I’ve been wrong, but this feels right’: BlackBerry CEO’s bet on security pays off in privacy scandal age‘You better not screw with us’: BlackBerry seeks new life from old patents to stem sales declineBlackBerry says it has been working to establish a dialogue on potential partnerships with Snap for more than a year, and is still open to one, but says it has an obligation to pursue appropriate legal remedies.The lawsuit against Snap follows ones filed against Facebook Inc. and its WhatsApp and Instagram subsidiaries in early March alleging infringement on several patents related to messaging applications.Snap did not immediately respond to a request for comment. read more

Home Capital hones in on new CEO as it works to restore

Home Capital hones in on new CEO as it works to restore market confidence TORONTO – Home Capital Group says it’s narrowed down potential CEO candidates to a “short short list” and is weeks away from making an announcement, as it strives to reverse its fortunes after suffering a run on deposits earlier this year.Company chairwoman Brenda Eprile said the alternative mortgage lender is also close to identifying a new chief financial officer but will await input from the person who takes over as chief executive.“We want to make sure that our new CEO is involved in that process,” Eprile told reporters following the company’s annual shareholder meeting in Toronto Thursday. “That’s a partnership that’s critical.”The management shuffle is part of the company’s efforts to restore market confidence following allegations from the Ontario Securities Commission that it misled investors in its handling of a scandal surrounding falsified loan applications.The securities watchdog’s allegations caused customers to pull out deposits from the lender’s GICs and savings account en masse, forcing it to secure a costly line of credit from the Healthcare of Ontario Pension Plan to finance its operations.The company has since settled the OSC case, as well as a class action lawsuit filed by investors, and has been aggressively advertising high interest rates on its savings products in order to attract additional funds.While Home Capital says there are encouraging signs of a turnaround afoot, board member Alan Hibben said during the annual meeting Thursday that it’s “too early to declare victory.”The lender has seen inflows of deposits since it got a vote of confidence from famed billionaire Warren Buffett, whose Berkshire Hathaway will invest up to $400 million in the company.The Toronto Stock Exchange has given conditional approval, as expected, for Berkshire’s initial investment of $153.2 million to acquire 16 million Home Capital (TSX:HCG) shares, or about 20 per cent of the company’s total equity.A second round of investment from Berkshire would buy a further $247.7 million worth of Home Capital stock and raise its ownership stake to 38.4 per cent. That investment requires shareholder approval at a special meeting later this year.In another effort to shore up cash, the lender also announced that it has inked a deal to sell roughly $252 million of residential mortgages to an unnamed third party. The company says it will use the proceeds from the sale to pay down debt.Home Capital also provided an update Thursday on how much its near collapse back in May has cost the lender.The company says its expenses soared $175 million above normal during the second quarter as it fought to survive a cash shortage.The estimate includes a previously reported $100 million in fees and transaction costs related to the $2 billion of emergency funding that Home Capital borrowed from HOOPP.Home Capital says it also had a loss on the sale of some of its asset portfolio and higher than normal professional, legal and interest costs during the quarter.Follow @alexposadzki on Twitter.Note to readers: This is a corrected story. A previous version had the incorrect name for Home Capital Group Inc. by Alexandra Posadzki, The Canadian Press Posted Jun 29, 2017 5:43 am MDT Last Updated Jun 30, 2017 at 7:00 am MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email Chair Brenda J Eprile speaks at the Home Capital Group AGM in Toronto on Thursday June 29 , 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Young read more