Bankrupt iBeam inks pact with Williams

Communications Group to acquire almost all assets for $25 mil

HOLLYWOOD — IBeam Broadcasting, a provider of Internet streaming services, filed for bankruptcy Thursday and signed a deal for broadband provider Williams Communications Group to acquire nearly all of its assets for $25 million.

Williams will provide Sunnyvale, Calif.-based iBeam a bridge loan to keep operating; deal is subject to approval by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court. iBeam filed for Chapter 11 protection in Delaware.

The loan will allow iBeam to continue supporting customers, and Williams will take most outstanding contracts.

Williams accepted iBeam convertible preferred stock representing about 49% of the company in a June 25 deal for $20 million in cash and $10 million in services.

Upon completion of the proposed purchase, Williams plans to integrate iBeam’s streaming and Webcasting businesses into its Vyvx Broadband Media unit, which provides integrated transmission and broadband media services including fiber-optic and satellite transmission, digital media management, content gathering and distribution, as well as managed Web hosting and streaming.

IBeam’s clients include AtomShockwave, BBC Online, CBS Sportsline.com, CNBC, MTVi and Launch.com.

Ibeam, which once traded at a 52-week-high of $83, halted trading on Thursday at 29¢.

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