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The UK arm of Global Crossing, the financially stricken US carrier, is to file for administration, following the collapse of an auction for the company, the Sunday Telegraph says.

The two lead contenders were Apax Partners and Scottish and Southern Energy, but Apax pulled out of the race, following its failed attempt to buy Energis. Scottish and Southern did not submit a final bid, according to the Sunday Telegraph, which says an unnamed bidder has offered a knockdown £30m.

Global Crossing UK operates a substantial UK fibre optic network and has a large corporate customer base. It was formed from Racal Telecom, acquired in 1999 for £1bn, but more recently was said to be worth £250m.

But how much now? The company is said to need £30-£80m in funding. Administration will give it some breathing space, while buyers for some or all of its assets emerge.

Global Crossing US went into Chapter 11 on January 28. ®

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