July 6, 2018 / 6:43 AM / 3 months ago

UPDATE 1-Echostar seeks talks with Inmarsat after $3.2 bln offer rebuffed

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LONDON, July 6 (Reuters) - U.S. satellite group EchoStar said on Friday it was seeking engagement with the board of Inmarsat after the British firm rejected its latest takeover offer worth $3.2 billion to equity holders.

EchoStar, which has started to build a small stake in Inmarsat, said the British company had rejected its latest offer on Wednesday, valuing it at 532 pence per Inmarsat share in cash and stock.

Inmarsat rejected a previous approach from EchoStar in June, saying the offer significantly undervalued the company.

The company's shares closed at 526 pence on Thursday, up 26 percent since the bid interest emerged in June.

"EchoStar believes that the improved proposal presents a compelling opportunity for Inmarsat's shareholders to realize certain value from their investment in Inmarsat while also participating meaningfully in the upside potential of the combined company," it said.

Echostar had been set a deadline of 1700 local time on Friday to "put up or shut up". It said it would be willing to proceed with the proposal if it received an extension of the deadline and the recommendation of the Inmarsat board. ($1 = 0.7556 pounds) (Reporting by Kate Holton, editing by James Davey)

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