11/10/2014 03:21 EST | Updated 01/10/2015 05:59 EST

BlackBerry stock up 6% after John Chen meets with Chinese firms

BlackBerry Ltd. stock rose by six per cent Monday after CEO John Chen told an APEC summit he had met the CEOs of Chinese smartphone sellers Xiaomi and Lenovo.

Chen said he’s interested in partnerships to expand in China in a speech at Bloomberg’s Asia-Pacific Economic Co-operation CEO summit and denied he had plans to sell off parts of the company.

The smartphone company is a small player in China, so any partnership to expand its presence in the country could prove lucrative.

BlackBerry got 16 per cent of its sales from the Asia- Pacific region during the fiscal year that ended in March, compared with 19 per cent from the U.S.

The stock rose 75 cents to $12.69 Canadian in Toronto today.

Chen gave no details of his talks with Chinese firms and said it was too early to see any fruits of these discussions.

"What I’m doing is to explore what is the right approach to the market given what we do well, and I’m not shutting any doors," he said. "This market is not an easy one to get deals done quickly. It’s going to take a while, but I’m interested."

As Chen remakes BlackBerry as a provider of enterprise services, Chinese partners may be interested in its privacy and security settings.

BlackBerry’s stock is up more than 40 per cent since Chen, known for leading the turnaround at Sybase Inc.,  took the helm as interim CEO.