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BlackBerry to buy cybersecurity firm Cylance for $1.4 billion

Key Points
  • Besides the cash component, the deal includes the assumption of Cylance's unvested employee incentives.
  • California-based Cylance develops AI-based products to prevent cyberattacks on companies.

Visitors try out Blackberry smartphones on the first day of the CeBIT 2012 technology trade fair on March 6, 2012 in Hanover, Germany.
Sean Gallup | Getty Images News | Getty Images

BlackBerry Ltd said on Friday it will acquire Cylance, an artificial intelligence and cybersecurity company, for $1.4 billion in cash to help expand its QNX unit that makes software for next-generation autonomous cars. 

Besides the cash component, the deal includes the assumption of Cylance's unvested employee incentives, BlackBerry said. 

California-based Cylance develops AI-based products to prevent cyberattacks on companies and recently considered filing for an IPO, according to a report in Business Insider.

The Canadian technology company, which dominated the smartphone market a decade ago, has shifted to selling software to manage mobile devices in addition to focusing on emerging areas like autonomous cars.

Cylance will operate as a separate business unit within BlackBerry, the company said.