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BlackBerry extends contract with executive chairman John Chen through 2023

Last Updated Mar 15, 2018 at 11:28 am EDT

Chief executive John Chen speaks at the BlackBerry Ltd. annual meeting in Waterloo, Ont., on Tuesday, June 23, 2015. BlackBerry Ltd. (TSX:BB) is launching a new security tool for automobile manufacturers, one of the company's major areas of growth. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn

BlackBerry Ltd. is extending executive chairman and chief executive John Chen’s contract through to November 2023.

Chen joined BlackBerry in November 2013 and has led the company through a restructuring that has seen it transform from a smartphone maker into a cybersecurity software and services firm.

BlackBerry lead director Prem Watsa says Chen’s leadership is critical and that the board has determined that it’s in the best of interests of the company to keep him at the helm.

The five-year contract extension is weighted toward long-term performance-based equity and cash awards, in addition to a time-based equity award, the company says.

It adds there will be no change to Chen’s base salary, short-term cash incentive or benefits.

BlackBerry is expected to report its fourth-quarter results on March 28.

Bloomberg estimates the contract to be worth $128-million, based on the performance of the company’s stock.