Dish Network to Merge with EchoStar to Enhance Mobile Market

In an all-stock deal, satellite and broadband companies Dish Network and Echostar announced they would merge, reuniting the two businesses after they separated about 15 years ago.

“This is a strategically and financially compelling combination that is all about growth and building a long-term sustainable business,” Charlie Ergen (pictured), chairman of Dish and EchoStar, said in a statement.

Since the spinoff in 2008, Dish has acquired assets from EchoStar, including its broadcast satellite service, while EchoStar has focused on satellite communications, such as its Hughes subsidiary’s consumer internet service.

The merger will exchange 2.85 shares of Dish common stock for each share of EchoStar stock, a 12.9 percent premium for EchoStar shareholders as of the July 5 trading close.

EchoStar CEO Hamid Akhavan will become CEO of the combined company. Erik Carlson, the current CEO of Dish, will leave the company once the transaction closes.

Dish, which owns Boost Mobile, Ting, Republic Wireless and Gen Mobile, looks to expand beyond satellite TV into the mobile telecom market, with its Dish Wireless business. As part of the merger announcement, Dish said its 5G network now covers more than 70 percent of the United States.

Dish has also expanded into streaming TV services, through its Sling TV subsidiary.