AT&T switches target to DISH?

US giant telco AT&T, stymied in its $39 billion bid to buy T-Mobile, may now mount a bid to buy US satellite DTH broadcaster Dish Network, founded by Charlie Ergen.

Analysts at investment bank Stifel Nicolaus suggested in a note to clients that Dish Network, the USA’s second-largest satellite broadcaster, is now firmly in AT&T sights given that it is “desperate for spectrum” as a result of the failed T-Mobile bid.

These days Charlie Ergen is much more that a straightforward DTH broadcaster. Dish Network owns Blockbuster, and has recently acquired extra spectrum in the form of DBSD North America (the former ICO Global Communications) and most recently by acquiring TerreStar Networks .

Erghen has not ruled out such a marriage. In November he admitted that Dish was interested in linking up with a wireless company.

Dish Network’s shares yesterday rose 9.2 per cent on the gossip, and are up 40 per cent this year.

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