EchoStar keeps Inmarsat waiting

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Under London stock exchange takeover rules EchoStar has until July 6th to make a formal bid for London-based satellite operator Inmarsat, or walk away.

With the US on holiday today (July 4th) some observers expect a statement – or action – tomorrow.

A bid by EchoStar on June 8th was rebutted by Inmarsat, although it later became known that EchoStar had quietly bought up some 10.4 per cent of Inmarsat’s debt, and acquired 3 per cent of its shares.

The situation was further complicated when Paris-based Eutelsat stated that it would make a bid, only to change its mind 24 hours later. Under the same set of stock exchange rules Eutelsat is now effectively barred from making a bid for 6 months.

Inmarsat’s share price and market capitalization have rocketed since the Echostar bid was made, although there were falls on July 2nd and 3rd, tumbling from £7.50 to £6.69 by close of business July 3rd.


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