BlackBerry said on Monday that it had reached an agreement to be taken private by a group led by Fairfax Financial Holdings. The company signed a letter of intent that would pay shareholders $9 a share in cash, a deal that values the faltering smartphone maker at about $4.7 billion, according to a press release. Fairfax already owns 10 percent of BlackBerry. BlackBerry entered into the agreement on the recommendation of a special committee of its board, which has been evaluating strategic options for the company as its market share has continued to erode in recent months. While being privately held would allow BlackBerry to restructure without worrying about bad news affecting its share price, several analysts have questioned how it can remain in the phone business without access to open capital markets. Its competitors like Apple and Google are among the most profitable and largest corporations in the world.