EchoStar to Acquire Slingbox

The satellite provider says the $385 million deal will push programming to more screens.

Satellite television provider EchoStar Communications plans to acquire Sling Media for $380 million in cash and EchoStar stock options. EchoStar, of Englewood, Colo., the operator of the Dish Network, already owns a stake in the popular Sling Media, which allows users to stream their television signals to a PC or cell phone.

"With todays increasingly mobile lifestyle, EchoStars acquisition of Sling Media will allow us to offer innovative and convenient ways for our customers to enjoy their programming on more displays and locations, including TVs, computers and mobile phones, both inside and outside of the home," EchoStar founder and CEO Charlie Ergen said Sept. 25 in a statement.

EchoStar expects the transaction to close in the fourth quarter.

Founded in 2004, Slings product line, which includes the Slingbox for television streaming, is distributed through more than 5,000 retail stores in 11 countries.

"We have worked closely with EchoStar for more than two years and have come to realize that both companies have similar entrepreneurial cultures," Blake Krikorian, co-founder, chairman and CEO of Sling Media, said in a statement.

Krikorian added that by combining the strategies and resources of his company and EchoStar, "Sling Media will be able to rapidly expand our open multiplatform product offerings, not only for Dish Network subscribers, but for digital media enthusiasts around the globe."

EchoStar currently serves more than 13.5 million satellite TV customers.


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