Icahn, Dish bid for Blockbuster assets — WSJ

* Dish, Icahn bid for bankrupt Blockbuster — report

* Bids qualify potential suitors for bankruptcy auction

NEW YORK, April 1 (Reuters) – Satellite television company
Dish Network Corp (DISH.O: Quote, Profile, Research) and billionaire investor Carl Icahn
have submitted bids for bankrupt movie rental chain Blockbuster
Inc (BLOAQ.PK: Quote, Profile, Research), the Wall Street Journal reported, citing people
familiar with the matter.

The bids, which were due on Thursday, will qualify the two
suitors for an auction in federal bankruptcy court in Manhattan
on Monday, the Journal said.

A spokesman for Dish, led by satellite billionaire Charlie
Ergen, declined comment on Friday. Icahn did not immediately
return calls seeking comment.

Once the world’s largest video rental chain, Blockbuster
filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in September with
about $900 million in debt.

A group of hedge funds led by Monarch Alternative Capital
had already made a so-called “stalking horse” bid of $290
million for the company in February, setting the floor that
other bidders had to top to buy the company.

SK Telecom Co Ltd (017670.KS: Quote, Profile, Research) South Korea’s top mobile
carrier, was also considering an investment in Blockbuster, an
official of the company told Reuters on Wednesday.
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The amount of the Dish and Icahn bids could not be
determined, the Journal said. Bidders were submitting minimum
offers, less than $296 million, to qualify for the auction, the
newspaper said, citing one of the people familiar with the
matter.

Blockbuster’s brand could be valuable for Dish’s
video-on-demand services or it could be an outlet to sell Dish
subscriptions, the Journal said.

Icahn has been interested in buying Blockbuster for some
time and vied with the Monarch group to be the initial bidder
for the company.

The case is in re: Blockbuster Inc, U.S. Bankruptcy Court,
Southern District of New York, No 10-14997
(Reporting by Dena Aubin; editing by Andre Grenon)

Icahn, Dish bid for Blockbuster assets — WSJ