Court allows Aereo asset auction
December 29, 2014
By Colin Mann
A ruling by a US bankruptcy court will allow Internet entertainment streaming service Aereo to auction its TV streaming technology assets. It had filed a voluntary petition for Chapter 11 reorganisation in the US Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York on November 21 following the suspension of its operations June 28th after the Supreme Court copyright decision in favour of US broadcasters.
US Bankruptcy Judge Sean Lane November 24th had approved a series of requests by Aereo to allow what remains of the company to function while it liquidates, but the broadcasters sought to halt the process. However, Lane ruled on December 24 that Aereo could sell its assets, the company reaching an agreement with broadcasters over the sale process.
Aereo will allow the broadcasters to attend the auction of the assets and provide them a weekly update on the status of the sale process.
“There is a need for some speed,” said Judge Lane, who cited the Chapter 11 mandate to preserve the value of assets for creditors among other things by selling them quickly.
There remains a possibility that US District Judge Alison Nathan – who ruled in the Supreme Court case that led to Aereo suspending its operations – will pull the plug on the bankruptcy altogether.