Nortel, in bankruptcy, sells IPv4 address block for $7.5 million

Wake up call for our friends in the Regional Internet Registries. Nortel, the Canadian telecommunications equipment manufacturer that filed for bankruptcy protection in 2009, has succeeded in making its legacy IPv4 address block an asset that can be sold to generate money for its creditors. The March 23 edition of the Dow Jones Daily Bankruptcy Report has reported that Nortel's block of 666,624 IPv4's was sold for $7.5 million – a price of $11.25 per IP address. The buyer of the addresses was Microsoft. More information is in its filing in a Delware bankruptcy court. Now the interesting question becomes, does the price of IPv4s go up or down from here? As the realities of dual stack sink in, I'm betting…up.

2 comments

  1. Anonymous

    Milton –
    Did you have an opportunity to review the actual docket materials, or is your “coverage” based just on your review of the referenced article?
    The parties have requested approval of a sale order from the Bankruptcy judge. There is a timeline for making filings and a hearing date. There is not an approved sale order at this time, contrary to your blog entry title.
    ARIN has a responsibility to make clear the community-developed policies by which we maintain the ARIN Whois database, and any actual transfer of number resources in compliance with such policies will be reflected in the database.
    FYI,
    /John
    John Curran
    President and CEO
    ARIN

  2. Anonymous

    John,
    I'm not a lawyer (yet) or bankruptcy expert (but will consult my Prof. about this) but here's my understanding:
    1) a non-party to a bankruptcy proceeding can intervene in a purported asset sale during said proceeding if they have an interest (i.e property-type) in the asset.
    2) ARIN's position is that there is no property interest in IP addresses (LRSA, RSA, etc).
    You seem to imply and that ARIN may make a “filing/intervene in hearings” due to its responsibility.
    Not sure on what basis ARIN can intervene and how/if said intervention and arguments therein would be in contravention to long-held ARIN policy.
    Ernie