EchoStar Announces Completion of Dish Network Acquisition

EchoStar Corp. has announced the completion of its acquisition of Dish Network Corp. on Dec. 31.

To complete the acquisition, a wholly owned subsidiary of EchoStar merged with and into Dish Network, with Dish Network surviving the merger as a wholly owned subsidiary of EchoStar. As previously announced, as a result of the merger, each share of Dish Network Class A Common Stock and Dish Network Class C Common Stock converted into 0.350877 shares of EchoStar Class A Common Stock, and each share of Dish Network Class B Common Stock converted into 0.350877 shares of EchoStar Class B Common Stock.

The transaction combines Dish Network’s satellite technology, streaming services and nationwide 5G network with EchoStar’s satellite communications solutions. It combines Dish Network’s 5G wireless network, which now covers more than 70% of the U.S. population, and EchoStar’s launch of the Jupiter 3 satellite with significant available capacity for converged terrestrial and non-terrestrial services, according to Echostar.

The combined company is headquartered in Englewood, Colo. The company will market worldwide under several brands, including Boost Mobile, Boost Infinite, Sling TV and DISH TV, as well as EchoStar, Hughes and Jupiter satellite services, HughesON managed services and HughesNet satellite internet.

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“This merger brings us one step closer to our goal of offering ubiquitous connectivity to people, enterprises and things, everywhere,” said Hamid Akhavan, president and CEO of EchoStar, in a statement. “Together we’re better positioned to realize the connected future by leveraging every type of transport, combined with smart, enabling technologies and fully integrated services. Our superior portfolio of technology, spectrum, engineering, manufacturing and network management expertise will deliver the unparalleled connectivity solutions that customers demand.”

“The completion of this merger marks an important milestone for our company and our customers, launching a new era of connectivity,” Charles Ergen, executive chairman of the board of EchoStar, said in a statement. “We have brought together two trailblazing companies with complementary portfolios to create a global connectivity leader with premier wireless, satellite, and video distribution capabilities. Together, EchoStar and DISH offer an enhanced consumer connectivity business and an unmatched enterprise managed services business. In a world that is increasingly wireless, we are well-positioned to drive revenue and profitable growth.”

“Bridging the digital divide and seamlessly connecting people, enterprises, and things is essential in the digital-first economy,” said John Swieringa, President, technology and chief operating officer of EchoStar, said in a statement. “Our combined brands, technology and operational and engineering resources uniquely position EchoStar to provide a compelling global offering that connects consumers to the internet access, mobile phone service, television programming, and streaming content they want, as well as delivering business and government customers the secure terrestrial, non-terrestrial, and hybrid connectivity solutions they need.”

EchoStar CEO Hamid Akhavan Assumes Same Title at Dish Ahead of Merger

When Dish Network and EchoStar Corp. announced a merger in August, the companies said EchoStar boss Hamid Akhavan would become CEO of Dish.

Dish Nov. 13 made it official, announcing the appointment of Akhavan as its new president/CEO, reporting to Dish co-founder/chairman Charlie Ergen.

Hamid Akhavan

The merger, which is subject to regulatory approvals and customary closing conditions, is expected to be completed by year-end.

“Hamid brings a unique set of skills to Dish, building off his experience in the technology, telecom, private equity and investment sectors,” Ergen said in a statement. “An engineer by background, he’s financially astute and a seasoned manager.”

Before joining Dish and EchoStar, Akhavan was most recently a partner at Twin Point Capital, an investment firm, and a founding partner of Long Arc Capital LLC. He held a variety of executive leadership positions, including CEO of Unify Inc. (formerly Siemens Enterprise Communications), COO at Deutsche Telekom and CEO of T-Mobile International, where he also served as a member of the board of management of Deutsche Telekom.

The hiring comes after Dish announced it was laying off 500 employees due to ongoing changes in the marketplace, including a dismal fiscal third-quarter that saw the satellite TV operator lose 1.1 million subscribers.

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Deluxe Expands Pact With Satellite-Based EchoStar for Digital Theatrical Movie Distribution

Deluxe and EchoStar Corp. July 8 introduced an expanded movie distribution platform for U.S. theaters that adds high-speed, terrestrial broadband and a new content management portal to the companies’ existing satellite distribution, which currently serves more than 3,000 cinemas.

Theater operators can now choose to receive content over high-speed terrestrial or satellite connectivity and gain access to cloud-based content platform from Gofilex, a Dutch-based film delivery company Deluxe recently invested in.

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“Following our acquisition of 50% ownership interest in Gofilex, we are excited to bring this innovative e-delivery platform to the U.S.,” George Eyles, EVP/GM of worldwide cinema at Deluxe, said in a statement. “With thousands of cinemas still receiving hard drives, we will proactively target these locations to provide a sustainable electronic delivery solution.”

As cinemas welcome back vaccinated moviegoers, enhanced distribution Deluxe and EchoStar gives them a competitive advantage, bringing together Deluxe’s 100+ years of movie distribution experience, with EchoStar’s managed broadband services and Gofilex’s FilmVault to search, track and support real-time, time-shifted and encore events.

“We are excited to continue our longstanding relationship with Deluxe and collectively reshape the landscape for theatrical content distribution with the addition of managed, high-speed terrestrial broadband,” Ken Carroll, EVP of EchoStar, said in a statement. “Connecting theaters to high-speed broadband, we are able to support the current and future electronic delivery needs of the industry with unmatched scale and reliability.”

Satellite operator EcoStar is owned by Charlie Ergen, who also owns Dish Network.

Separately, Deluxe announced a strategic partnership with CineSend for electronic delivery of content to cinemas in Canada. The partnership joins CineSend’s existing network with Deluxe’s electronic delivery platform to create a single fulfilment solution.

“CineSend is a natural partner for Deluxe, whose goal is to offer a compelling solution for studios and distributors with global scale,” Eyles said.

Deluxe will be installing its Gofilex software onto CineSend’s CSX hardware, which is already widely deployed in cinemas across Canada.

Eric Rosset, VP of business development at CineSend, welcomed the announcement.

“Plugging our solution into a worldwide network makes perfect sense,” Rosset said in a statement. “The real winners are Hollywood studio clients whose distribution strategies are global in nature.”

CineSend will continue to provide its distribution services to film festivals, airlines, and diverse businesses with secure video streaming needs. Deluxe and CineSend will be working with the market to integrate the electronic delivery solution in Canada in the coming months.

Dish Consolidates Satellite TV Holdings

Dish Network May 20 announced it is combining certain EchoStar operations and other assets that comprise the company’s satellite business, including nine direct broadcast satellites and the certain key employees responsible for operations.

The 22.9 million stock transaction, which includes select real estate properties, will be distributed to EchoStar shareholders.

Dish in 2017 acquired select EchoStar assets to better deliver linear pay-TV and online platform Sling TV to subscribers. Key broadcast satellite operations and services remained with EchoStar, which is also owned by Dish chairman Charlie Ergen.

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“This transaction brings those operations, including the BSS satellites, associated assets and key team members, in house and we expect those additions will create operational efficiencies and improve both free cash flow and pre-tax earnings,” Dish CEO Erik Carlson said in a statement.

The transaction is structured to be a tax-free exchange and is expected to close in the second half of 2019, subject to satisfaction or waiver of closing conditions.