Echostar Seeks 32 Billion Bid Talks With Inmarsat As Deadline Looms


LONDON – U.S. satellite group EchoStar (SATS.O) urged Britain’s Inmarsat (ISA.L) to open talks about a takeover approach worth $3.2 billion to shareholders just hours before a deadline for the American company to make a firm offer was due to expire.

Shares in Inmarsat fell 8.5 percent on Friday morning to 481 pence after EchoStar revealed it had made a cash and shares bid of 532 pence per share on July 3 that Inmarsat had rejected the following day.

EchoStar, which is chaired by entrepreneur Charlie Ergen, faces a deadline of 1700 London time (1600 GMT) on Friday to make a firm offer or walk away from Inmarsat for six months, under rules laid down by Britain’s Takeover Panel.

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