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Echostar raising funds to buy DirecTV?

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May 25, 2001 | 1:09pm EDT

Setting off renewed speculation that EchoStar Communications, which operates the DISH-TV satellite service, is getting set to bid for rival DirecTV, the company said Tuesday that it may use proceeds from a $1-billion note offering to make acquisitions. EchoStar initially had said that it planned to use the proceeds primarily for building and launching new satellites. Bloomberg news quoted Salomon Smith Barney analyst Armand Musey as saying that the announcement has set off "speculation that EchoStar could be building a war chest" to compete for Hughes Electronics' DirecTV -- the country's leading satellite service, which is also being wooed by News Corp's Rupert Murdoch.

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