Exodus Communications has lost only four out of 280 UK customers as a result of its financial difficulties and the recent buyout by Cable & Wireless (C&W), according to its managing director.
Last week the US bankruptcy court in Delaware approved the C&W bid to purchase a majority of the assets of the US web hosting company. Exodus had filed for bankruptcy protection last Autumn.
Speaking for the first time since the buy-out, Exodus UK managing director Gavin Kilfoil said the UK company was in good shape.
"We still have about 260 customers out of 280," he said. "Of the 20 we lost, 16 have gone out of business." He explained that he had phoned or visited every one of them to explain the situation at the time of the filing.
Kilfoil also said that around 68 per cent were enterprise companies, whereas that percentage had been dotcom companies a year earlier, meaning a much sounder customer base.
Although the UK workforce had slimmed down from 300 to its present 130, he maintained that strenuous efforts had been made to retain the best staff.
The court had to work through nearly 100 individual objections to the C&W bid before it finally granted approval on Friday.
In the US C&W will gain all of Exodus' customer contracts and a majority of its corporate and data centre assets. It will also receive all intellectual property including the Exodus brand name, its employees and other unspecified resources that will support the customers and allow future growth.
Technically it will be C&W's wholly owned web hosting subsidiary Digital Island, which it bought last year, that will make the purchase. C&W is believed to have purchased Digital Island after its offers for Exodus earlier in the year were turned down by the then chief executive Ellen Hancock.
"C&W is not well known in North America," said Kilfoil. "So it's possible it will want to retain the Exodus brand name there. Here it is the reverse and, with Digital Island, it is anyone's guess what the name will be."
The deal does not extend to Exodus' overseas operations which include two data centres in London, and others in Frankfurt and Tokyo. The intention is to retain these, but Kilfoil said he thought some of Digital Island's capacity would be superfluous to requirements.
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