Digest: EchoStar waiting game


Satellite TV firm EchoStar Communications Corp. plans to wait for Liberty Media to gain control of competitor DirecTV Group before considering a possible merger, chairman and CEO Charles Ergen signaled Monday at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. "It will take all of 2007 to get done," he said about the deal that will transfer control of DirecTV from News Corp. to Liberty. "We'll see what it looks like after that." Ergen said previous attempts to merge with DirecTV had distracted EchoStar from its operations.

WMG, Motorola in harmony

Warner Music Group and Motorola Inc. on Monday unveiled a global strategic partnership to create new music-based products for the mobile platform. Motorola hopes to offer consumers exclusive content, including such premium products as preloaded and over-the-air delivered full-length songs, ringtones, ringback tones, mobile music videos, wallpapers and more, the firms said. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Televisa a 'top pick'

Merrill Lynch on Monday raised its price target on shares of Mexican broadcaster Grupo Televisa to $34, saying the stock "remains one of (the) top picks in Latin American Media due to a benign competitive environment, high returns on capital and attractive valuation." Analyst Michael Kopelman also said current stock momentum could stall midyear if negotiations with the winning private-equity group for Univision Communications "reopen at the same time as Televisa faces difficult comparisons from the first half of 2006." Either way, "we would be buyers on any weakness in anticipation of another second half rally," he told investors in his report.