BlackBerry Statement on U.S. Immigration Ban

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Like many of you, I am disheartened and do not agree with the sharpness of President Trump’s executive order and immigration ban.

Many technology companies, both in the U.S. and in Canada, were founded by immigrants. At BlackBerry, more than half of the executive team and many of our employees – including myself – are immigrants, so we see firsthand every day the value and benefits of legal immigration. While there is a need to protect citizens, we must also preserve our strength in diversity.

In addition, President Trump has spoken of his desire to ease doing business globally, and this does not help in that regards. If this does not get resolved in a more compassionate manner, it will hurt trade, especially if the ban expands beyond these seven countries.

We hope that this new administration will find better ways to handle such matters in the future. I encourage everyone to continue to seek out and build diverse teams like we do at BlackBerry. Companies and the countries we live in will be better for this.

(Note: BlackBerry Chairman and CEO John Chen spoke earlier with BNN about these issues: http://www.bnn.ca/video/blackberry-ceo-on-trump-s-stance-on-immigration-it-will-hurt-trade~1046226)

About John Chen

As Executive Chairman and CEO of BlackBerry Limited, John Chen is responsible for defining the company’s vision and goals, setting its strategy, and ensuring the team’s execution matches corporate objectives. Appointed in November 2013, John has led BlackBerry through a successful pivot from hardware icon to software leader. Today the company is poised to leverage its brand strength and heritage in mobile security along with its enterprise cybersecurity and embedded software growth engines to accelerate into the Enterprise of Things, an emerging category with billions of connected devices and massive market potential.

John has more than 30 years of engineering and management experience including serving as Chairman and CEO of Sybase Inc. along with executive roles at Siemens Nixdorf, Pyramid Technology Corp., Unisys, and Burroughs Corp.

John graduated magna cum laude from Brown University with a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering and a master's in electrical engineering from the California Institute of Technology (Caltech). In addition to BlackBerry, John serves on the board of directors for The Walt Disney Company in addition to several non-profits and previously served on the board of directors for Wells Fargo, CIT Group Inc., Beyond.com, Niku Corporation, Wafer Technology, and Turbolinux.

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