Chelsfield switches on Switch

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The Independent Online

Chelsfield, the quoted property group, is close to restructuring its holding in Global Switch which could see it reduce its exposure to the troubled telehotel business.

Elliott Bernerd, Chelsfield's chairman, said: "Something will happen in the next two weeks that will change the company's shareholder base."

Global Switch (GS), whose biggest single tenant is Global Crossing (GC), the US telecoms company that filed bankruptcy protection last week, has hit Chelsfield's profits. Chelsfield owns a third of GS.

The other shareholders are Canadian property company TrizecHahn and GS founder Andy Ruhan.

Talks to sell a stake in GS to Italian property company Risanamento Napoli collapsed late last year.

Mr Bernerd said GC paid its rent last week. If it collapsed, he said GS would benefit from the investment GC had made in its buildings.