AT&T set to scoop up Excite@Home assets

As expected, Excite@Home Inc. announced Friday that AT&T Corp. will purchase the broadband Internet access business and services assets of the Internet service provider (ISP) for US$307 million.

Excite@Home serves about 3.2 million broadband subscribers but has been hurt by lagging advertising revenue. The company announced earlier this week that it would lay off close to 25 percent of its staff and make large cutbacks to its portal services. AT&T previously held a 23 percent stake in the company, and industry analysts expected the telecommunications giant to acquire the remaining shares of Excite@Home.

In addition to selling off its assets, Excite@Home will file for relief under Chapter 11 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code on Friday in a San Francisco court. The sale of Excite@Home assets hinges on the court’s approval of the sale and whether another company makes a higher offer, according to a statement by Excite@Home.

The sale should make it possible for customers to continue using the Excite@Home service, company officials said in the statement.

Excite@Home, in Redwood City, Calif., is at