Nortel delaying auction of GSM assets

Nortel Networks has decided to postpone the auction of its GSM/GSM-R units from Nov. 9 to Nov. 20, citing the current status of its divestitures and other asset sales. The company said it made the decision after discussing the issue with "interested parties." Bidders will be required to submit bids by Nov. 16 as part of an open auction for the units.

The bankrupt company first announced it would put its GSM units on the block a little less than a month ago. The news followed the the sale of the Canadian vendor's CDMA and LTE assets to Ericsson for $1.13 billion, the sale of its enterprise solutions division to Avaya for $915 million, and court approval to sell some of its LTE packet core assets to Hitachi for $10 million.

Nortel's GSM business unit earned $1.58 billion in 2008, though the company doesn't break out the numbers beyond that figure. It remains unclear what companies will emerge as bidders for the GSM businesses and how high the bids will range.

In other Nortel news, the company said it obtained an extension of bankruptcy protection from the Ontario Superior Court of Justice until Dec. 18, 2009. Nortel first filed for bankruptcy protection in January.

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