The December 10 issue of Forbes magazine presents an interesting theory to explain how Excite@Home wound up in its current embarrassing predicament. “A new conspiracy theory alleges that AT&T, despite controlling 23% of @Home’s common shares and 74% of the voting shares, drove the firm to the brink of bankruptcy–so it could then acquire the rest of it on the cheap. On the day @Home filed for Chapter 11, AT&T unveiled a deal to buy the company’s assets for $307 million–without staging an auction that might have lured a higher bidder.” Sounds plausible to me, although the proponents are all self-interested – creditors that are trying to block the AT&T deal and get more money into the pot, and @Home stockholders that are rumbling about suing AT&T. Here’s the article online (free registration required).

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