Cable & Wireless will today announce if it has won creditors ' backing for its £780 million bid for Energis.
The company set a deadline of 5pm yesterday for holders of 75 per cent of the debt by value to accept the offer - which it said would not be increased "under any circumstance".
The deadline passed without an announcement from C&W and a spokesman said none would be made before today.
The fight for control of Energis, which is owned by a consortium of banks, took a new twist yesterday when business telecoms group Thus staged an eleventh hour bid to snatch it from under the nose of C&W.
Glasgow-based Thus is a quarter the size of Energis but shocked the City when it revealed it would pay up to £800 million to lead the longawaited consolidation expected in the telecoms sector.
The Energis board later rejected the offer but hopes for Thus could be revived if Cable & Wireless fails to secure the support of Energis creditors for its own bid.
A deal involving Thus and Energis would create the UK's biggest operator focused purely on business communications, while saving Energis the cost of updating its network as Thus already has a state-of-the-art operation.
Thus revealed it submitted its proposal to the board of Chelys, the company that owns Energis, on July 27, but was told a few days later that its target was in exclusive talks with another party.
Energis, which offers products and services ranging from contact centres to data, voice and internet, has worked for corporate customers including the BBC, Thomas Cook, Wanadoo and Tesco.
Energis said it had rejected the Thus approach for " reasons of value, uncertainty and deliverability".
It pointed to the higher level of cash available in the C&W offer, as well as the amount of debt being taken on by Thus to fund its offer.
Energis added: "The potential value of the firm offer from Cable & Wireless is appreciably higher than that which might derive from Thus' outline proposal, taking full account of the assumption and repayment of external liabilities."
A deal by Thus would be business transforming as it has a stock market value of just over £200 million and has not made an acquisition since it picked up internet services provider Demon in May 1998. Thus was founded by Scottish Power in 1994 and rebranded in 1999 ahead of a stock market listing that year.
It plans to raise £600 million of the Energis purchase price through debt and the issue of new shares, with the remainder of the deal being met through the offer of Thus shares.
Industry experts said the scale and financial firepower of Cable & Wireless immediately put it in a stronger position than Thus, which made operating losses of £36 million in its last financial year.
Mike Cansfield, of telecoms consulting company Ovum, said consolidation was increasingly likely in such a highly competitive sector.
He added: "The logic for both parties is that they can put all Energis's traffic over their own network, which in turn makes their network more efficient and takes out a competitor in the process."
Cable & Wireless shares closed up 2p at 163.