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Nortel creditor seeks last minute investment partners

Alex Scroxton

Following its bid earlier in the month to restructure and recapitalise Nortel and save it from being broken up and sold, creditor Matlin Patterson is now on the look-out for investment partners to give its rescue plan extra credibility, after Nokia Siemens Networks started sabre-rattling last week.

According to the FT, Matlin Patterson, which believes Nokia Siemens' $650m stalking horse offer for Nortel's wireless business fails to maximise the unit's value, would "welcome" the involvement of strategic partners.

Under the terms of the stalking horse deal, Matlin Patterson has mere hours to put together a better offer for the unit, which includes profitable LTE and CDMA IP, with a court-mandated deadline for competing bids passing on 21 July ahead of the auction date set for Thursday.

The NYC-based venture capital outfit, which specialises in what it terms 'distressed securities' has also brought in several ex-Nortel bigwigs to help it get under the skin of the ailing comms vendor.

Nokia Siemens is reported to have poured scorn on the idea, saying it was too late to save Nortel in its current form.

Meanwhile Nortel has spoken out over the termination of its contract with LOCOG, the organising committee of the 2012 London Olympics. The vendor stressed that the decision to end its Olympic adventure was both "mutual and amicable".

As reported by MicroScope, the contract was awarded to Cisco after it became clear that the piecemeal sale of Nortel's assets meant it would be unable to fulfill its obligations as network infrastructure supplier to the games.

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