EchoStar announces Sling Media acquisition

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Dish Network operator EchoStar Communications has announced it has acquired Sling Media, maker of the cool Slingbox device that can send your home TV signal over the Internet, for $380 million in cash and EchoStar stock options.

EchoStar has been a constant investor in Sling since the company was founded in 2004. EchoStar knows video consumption trends are changing and is looking to differentiate its service from rival DirecTV and cable operators by offering subscribers television on the go. Even though the deal shows EchoStarís interest in streaming its content to remote locations, the company founder and CEO Blake Krikorian pledged that Slingbox will continue to deliver TV content from DirecTV and cable operators.

In related news, following the Sling Media acquisition announcement, EchoStar Communications said Tuesday that it may split into two publicly traded companies, one to operate the Dish satellite TV service and the other to focus on technology development.

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