AT&T buys Northpoint assets for $135 million

AT&T Corp. has agreed to acquire the assets of NorthPoint Communications Group Inc., the bankrupt U.S. DSL (Digital Subscriber Line) service provider, for approximately US$135 million, the companies announced Thursday.

AT&T will acquire all of NorthPoint’s collocation facilities nationwide as well as equipment, software and two leased buildings in Emeryville, California. The U.S. Bankruptcy Court approved the deal Thursday, according to an AT&T statement. Other regulatory approvals may take another 60 days to complete.

NorthPoint will take steps to conserve cash until the asset sale is complete — steps that may include staff reductions and termination of services to customers, according to a NorthPoint statement on Thursday. The company will continue trying to liquidate other assets not included in the sale to AT&T, it said.

NorthPoint sought protection under Chapter 11 of the U.S. bankruptcy law in January after a planned takeover by Verizon Communications Inc. fell through, leading to a shortfall in funding for NorthPoint. Verizon dropped out of the deal because of what it said were declining business and financial conditions for NorthPoint.

NorthPoint later sued Verizon, alleging violation of the terms of that takeover agreement.

AT&T, in Basking Ridge, N.J., can be reached at NorthPoint, in San Francisco, can be contacted at