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AT&T talks with new Sling-owner EchoStar said to be "heating up"

EchoStar sure seems to be keeping itself busy these days, with its long-running talks with AT&T now said to be "heating up" just days after it acquired Sling Media for a cool $380 million. According to, EchoStar is apparently considering splitting the company into two publicly traded units, one that would focus on its consumer TV service (which is where Sling fits in) and one that would focus on its wholesale satellite transmission service. As you can probably guess, it's the former that AT&T is interested in, and it's apparently prepared to pay $55 a share for the potentially separate company. According to TheStreet, however, EchoStar is currently holding out for a hefty $65 a share, although at least one analyst "sensing a deal in the works" is speculating that AT&T will "likely pay about $56 a share for the TV service." As TheStreet points out, the acquisition would likely help out AT&T with it's so-called Project Lightspeed, which aims to combine TV, phone, and internet service on a single fiber optic network.