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May 28, 1997updated 05 Sep 2016 12:32pm

NEWS CORP’S US SATELLITE PLANS MAY NOW INVOLVE PRIMESTAR

By CBR Staff Writer

News Corp’s US satellite plans may be rolling forward after all, as it is reportedly close to reaching an agreement to exchange the satellite assets it owns with its American Sky Broadcasting partner MCI Communications Corp for a non-voting minority stake in PrimeStar Partners LP, according to reports by Bloomberg and the Wall Street Journal. An announcement could come as early as this week. The report comes after News Corp’s proposed acquisition of a 50% stake in Colorado-based satellite provider EchoStar Communications Corp fizzled out and ended in legal action against News Corp (CI No 3,158). The deal with EchoStar would have seen Rupert Murdoch hand over $1bn and the satellite assets for the stake in EchoStar. PrimeStar Partners includes TCI Satellite Entertainment Inc – the former Tele-Communications Inc subsidiary – Time Warner Inc, Cox Communications Inc, Comcast Corp and US West Media Group Inc. PrimeStar operates a US-wide mini-dish satellite television network of 160 channels. News Corp declined to comment.

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