BlackBerry Z10 winning converts, Heins says, as shares rise

BlackBerry shares rose as much as 7.3% after Chief Executive Officer Thorsten Heins told a Spanish newspaper that the company’s new Z10 model has drawn more interest than expected from users of rival smartphones.

“We are receiving a very positive response to BlackBerry 10 from our customers, but it’s also been attractive for customers coming from other platforms,” Heins said in an interview with Expansion. “We are a little surprised by that.”

BlackBerry, formerly known as Research In Motion Ltd., is rolling out the Z10 country by country — part of a bid to win back market share lost to Apple Inc. and Samsung Electronics Co.’s Galaxy. Heins said last month that sales have been above the Waterloo, Ontario-based company’s “ambitious” expectations and production has increased.

The shares climbed as high as $13.50 Wednesday in New York trading, the biggest intraday jump in almost three weeks. BlackBerry’s stock had risen 6% this year through Tuesday.

“Operators are supporting us a lot because they want BlackBerry 10 to be an alternative to Samsung and Apple and they’ve seen it’s a real alternative,” Heins said in the Expansion interview...

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