COLT insolvency case dismissed

2 January 2003 -- Mr Justice Jacob has ruled that there is no basis for Highberry Ltd's petition for an administration order on London-based COLT Telecom.

2 January 2003 -- On 20 December London-based business communications service provider COLT Telecom Group plc says that Mr Justice Jacob has ruled in favour of COLT and dismissed the claims of hedge fund Highberry Ltd as: "a shaky, tentative and speculative peering into the middle distance". He concluded that there was no basis for forcing COLT into administration following Highberry's petition for an administration order on 22 October 2002.

Mr Justice Jacob said: "There is not and never has been, any substance whatever in their petition. It should never have been launched."

COLT's President and CEO Steve Akin added, "The case was won on the strength of COLT's business and financial resources, and I am pleased that the judge has rejected Highberry's claims out of hand, and dismissed all the arguments they made. He also found the no-action clause contained in the terms of our bonds, which was expressly designed to prevent nuisance actions of this nature, is valid.

"We said all along that Highberry's claims were completely without foundation and today's judgement confirms this. This victory is not just important for COLT but for other companies financed with public debt. It should serve as a warning to other vulture funds that they will not be allowed to disrupt capital markets in this country.

"We are obviously delighted with the decision of the Court, and we now intend to continue with the important business of running the company and serving the interests of all our stakeholders."

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