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Blockbuster Auction to Decide Fate

(Blockbuster auction updated with bid information.)

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- The battle for Blockbuster's (BLOAQ.PK) is heating up, as Carl Icahn and Dish Network up their offer for the bankrupt movie retailer.

Icahn and a group of liquidators made a bid of $310.6 million Tuesday afternoon, after Dish raised its offer to $307.1 million from $284 million.

South Korean wireless company SK Telecom made an offer of $284.5 million, which it will not raise. SK's offer would assume liabilities for movie studios and cover other costs.

The auction for Blockbuster began on Monday and could take several days to conclude.

Other bidders include Cobalt Video, which instigated the auction in February with a "stalking horse" bid of $290 million. Liquidators Gordon Brothers Group and Hilco Merchant Resources also made offers.

The auction will ultimately decide if Blockbuster will continue as an ongoing business. The winner of the auction has the option of keeping the chain afloat, liquidating the company or closing it. Proceeds from the sale will become part of the bankruptcy estate.

Judge Burton Lifland will still have to approve the winner of the auction in a hearing scheduled for April 7.

Since Blockbuster filed for bankruptcy in September, it has shuttered hundreds of stores, and last month announced it was seeking to terminate the leases on 187 other stores.

--Written by Jeanine Poggi in New York.

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