Sensitive data to be preserved in Enron auction

Enron Europe is to auction off its Compaq, Dell and Sun Microsystems servers and Cisco firewalls and switches at the company’s London headquarters next week, but equipment containing sensitive data will be held back.

PwC said it was trying to unravel billions of dollars of debt between different Enron companies.

Enron Europe filed for creditor protection under UK law in November 2001, after its US parent shut off day-to-day funding because of its own financial crisis, and filed for bankruptcy days later.

Meanwhile UK auctioneer Bache Treharne and Silicon Valley-based internet auctioneer DoveBid will conduct the auction of Enron Europe’s assets for the administrators at PwC.

The auction will take place from 27 February to 1 March at Enron Europe’s headquarters in Grosvenor Place and will be simultaneously webcast to bidders worldwide over the Internet.

In addition to the computer equipment, which includes about 4,000 NEC and SGI flat screen monitors, 3,000 Compaq and Dell PCs and more than 500 Compaq, Dell and Sun servers, the auction will offer telecommunications equipment, executive suites and furniture, refrigerators, ice-making machines, health club equipment and large quantities of printings, photographic prints and artworks.

All together, more than nine thousand lots will be auctioned, the largest UK auction in history, according to the auctioneers. The equipment has an original cost of more than £15m.

Peter Bache of Bache Treharne said the size and scope of the sale is unprecedented. “This is one of the highest profile and potentially one of the highest value auctions that a UK firm has held.”

DoveBid’s webcast technology will allow buyers from all over the world to compete in real time with buyers at Enron Europe’s headquarters.

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