Aereo's Assets Sold for Peanuts at Bankruptcy Auction

Updated on

Aereo Inc., the online-TV service backed by Barry Diller that was found to violate copyright law, garnered less than $2 million for its assets at a bankruptcy auction.

The New York-based company had said it expected bidding of $4 million to $31.2 million.

TiVo Inc., which makes digital video recorders, was the winning bidder for the online service’s trademark, customer list and certain other assets, Aereo said Thursday in a statement. RPX Corp., a patent risk-management company, bought Aereo’s patent portfolio. Information-technology consultant Alliance Technologies acquired some equipment.

The auction had 10 bidders, according to Aereo’s filing in bankruptcy court.

Aereo used tiny antennas to capture over-the-air television channels and stream programming to subscribers for $8 a month. The company didn’t get permission from the broadcast networks, which sued. The dispute went to the U.S. Supreme Court, where Aereo lost last year. The company filed for bankruptcy in November.

“We are very disappointed with the results of the auction,” William Baldiga, a lawyer for Aereo at Brown Rudnick LLP, said in a statement Thursday. “This has been a very difficult sales process and the results reflect that.”

Proceeds from the bankruptcy auction, which ran Tuesday and Wednesday, will be used to pay Aereo’s creditors. The company will seek a buyer for assets that weren’t put up for auction.

A hearing to approve the sale was scheduled for March 11. The case is In re Aereo Inc., 14-bk-13200, U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Southern District of New York (Manhattan).

Before it's here, it's on the Bloomberg Terminal. LEARN MORE