US DVD rental business Blockbuster, which went bankrupt last year, has been bought by US satellite broadcaster Dish Network after it won a $321m (£196m) auction.
Dish Network, controlled by Colorado billionaire Charlie Ergen, is the third-largest satellite group in the US.
According to The Independent, Ergen is expected to expand Blockbuster’s internet-streaming business, which offers film rentals, and will use some of its 1,700 stores to sell satellite dishes. Internet video is emerging as a major threat to cable and satellite television companies, particularly in the US, where businesses such as Netflix and Hulu offer television shows and films on demand.
Questions still remain over how the new owner will deal with Blockbuster’s traditional DVD rental business, which has suffered greatly. Several of the rival bidders planned to shut its stores down completely but Dish Network said it would continue.
Blockbuster collapsed last September after years of financial problems.
It is unclear if the sale will affect Blockbuster’s international operations, including the UK.