Bankrupt Nortel Networks Corp. could make as much as $1.1 billion by selling its technology patents, Bloombergs BusinessWeek reported on Wednesday.
Peter Conley of MDB Capital Group LLC told the news magazine the intellectual property is worth between $750 million and $1.1 billion. A patent lawyer in Virginia agreed with that assessment, as long as any deal includes Nortels LTE patents, Bloomberg said.
Nortel earlier this month confirmed that it is looking for a company to purchase its patents but will not identify any of those potential buyers. BlackBerry maker Research In Motion (RIM) is considered the top contender; however, like Nortel, BlackBerry isnt commenting.
If Nortel manages to snag a billion or more for its holdings, creditors will be tickled pink, Morgan Stanley analyst Ehud Gelblum told Bloomberg. And whatever the number comes to, it will add to the more than $2.8 billion Nortel has generated so far from asset sales so it can repay debt holders.
Nortel holds the rights to 4,500 patents and has more than 1,000 additional applications in the pipeline, according to U.S. Patent and Trademark Office data. A potential buyer will be most interested in the next-generation properties, such as 4G and IP-related technologies. Theres no word on when Nortel might sell its patents portfolio, or if it might instead license those holdings or resort to a combination of both.