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AtHome judge puts off cable contract ruling

Sun, 12/09/2001 - 7:00pm
Anne Kerven

A bankruptcy court judge Friday delayed a decision on $355 million in transition service contracts ExciteAtHome had developed last week with a group of cablecos.

After a judge ruled Nov. 30 that the cable companies would have to renegotiate contracts with bankrupt AtHome, a group of them negotiated $355 million in transition contracts. AtHome said at the time it would fulfill the new agreements until Feb. 28, then shut down. Other cable companies, such as AT&T Broadband and Adelphia, were shut off as they switched to new networks.

The agreements with cablecos are subject to bankruptcy court approval. AtHome spokeswoman Estela Mendoza confirmed that the judge had postponed the hearing, but would not comment on why.

Traditionally, however, such postponements come when an objection is raised that the judge must consider. Representatives for Judge Thomas E. Carlson, with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of California in San Francisco, referred reporters to the court counsel, who could not be reached by CEDaily's deadline.

AtHome said last week it would change its Chapter 11 bankruptcy to a Chapter 11 liquidation after AT&T withdrew a $307 million offer. AT&T said at the time that it terminated its asset purchase agreement with AtHome, because of "a number of significant breaches and other violations of the agreement by AtHome." AtHome had no other bidders.

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