Colony Capital LLC, a firm owned by the billionaire Thomas Barrack, and Stephen Ross' Related Cos. may seek to buy the assets of Corus Bankshares Inc., the Chicago lender facing a regulatory deadline to boost capital, people with knowledge of the matter said.

Corus, whose Florida condominium lending helped push it to the brink of seizure, hired Bank of America Corp. to solicit capital this month or sell the entire firm, people familiar with the matter said. Investors may offer to buy the lender while it's still in business or to purchase its assets out of receivership, sources said.

A post-seizure sale of Corus' assets could resemble the May 21 purchase of BankUnited Financial Corp. of Florida by buyout firms including Blackstone Group LP and Carlyle Group.

Messages left for Randy Curtis, Corus' interim chief executive officer, were not returned.

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