BlackBerry developer Research in Motion (Nasdaq: RIMM) has been approached by International Business Machines Corp. (NYSE: IBM) about a possible sale of its enterprise services unit, Bloomberg News reported, citing two insiders.

The approach for the unit of the Waterloo, Ontario-based smartphone developer was informal, the report said. Such a bid has been advocated for months by activist shareholder Victor Alboini of Toronro's Jaguar Financial, who in earlier interviews has urged a bidder like IBM or Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT), the world's biggest software company to buy the BlackBerry support business.

New RIM CEO hired Royal Bank of Canada (NYSE: RY) and JPMorgan Chase (NYSE: JPM) to provide strategic advice to the company but has remained committed to keeping the company whole in remarks to investors at the company's July annual meeting.

Neither RIM nor IBM, in Armonk, N.Y., would comment on the report.

 RIM shares rose 7 percent in premarket trading Friday to $8.32, up 52 cents, on the report. They're down 67 percent for the past 52 weeks.