Originally Posted by juwaack68
Although.....when he first set up BBM, he may have been asked to do a wireless backup (linked to his email account) and he may be able to get them back that way. Not really sure.
That's entirely possible... and when he once again sets up his BBM on the new device AND if the email account on his former (now lost) device is also on the new device, it should be recognized and ask if you want to use the email account to again wirelessly backup your BBM contacts. Hence, he could also press Restore (in BBM > Options) and restore, if there is anything there.