Possible XM/Sirius Merger

Discussion in 'Mobile Phones / Entertainment' started by Todd Henry, Jan 26, 2005.

  1. Todd Henry

    Todd Henry Second Unit

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  2. Ronald Epstein

    Ronald Epstein Administrator
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    This is very promising but yet scary stuff.....

    First, a monopoly may not be the best deal here. I could
    imagine prices skyrocketing.

    Second, could you imagine Sirius people programming this?
    My God! That would be absolutely horrible. If XM radio were
    reduced to the extremely tight playlists that plague Sirius we
    would be in BIG trouble.

    What would happen to Sirius and XM stocks? Would it be a
    good thing for stockholders or bad? My guess is GOOD since
    there would only be one player in town.

    Also concerned about Opie & Anthony. They have made it
    clear that Howard Stern was a huge crybaby who went to Mel
    (Sirius' new CEO) every time the boys talked about him. Gag
    orders were put on O&A not to talk about Stern. The fact that
    O&A rag on him daily on XM is due to the fact that they no
    longer work for the same company nor under Mel's grip.

    The best possible scenerio of a merger?

    Combining bandwidth may be great if it means giving us
    high definition music quality -- something that would put
    the Hi-Def FM market out of business.
     
  3. Ted Bissell

    Ted Bissell Auditioning

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    Mel Quashes Sirius-XM Merger Rumor
    Jan. 26, 2005

    Mel Karmazin characterized a New York Post report of a potential XM-Sirius merger as the “third rumor” he has had to deal with in his first eight weeks as Sirius CEO. “I have not met with the [XM] chair or the CEO, so I have no idea where this has come from,” he said during his firm’s Wednesday morning (1/26) earnings conference call.

    Commenting later in the call on a question about potential antitrust restrictions for such a merger, Karmazin said he would never try to predict what the government would or wouldn’t approve, adding that he thought such a merger would be a “difficult deal to get through.”

    According to Post writer Tim Arango, the two satellite competitors have been meeting lately to talk about the possibility of a merger but the discussions have not advanced. Among the topics reportedly discussed is how to maneuver antitrust concerns that would arise from what would amount to a monopoly in the fledgling satellite radio business.

    To alleviate those concerns, the Post suggests the two rivals’ strategy would be to convince regulators that satellite radio is part of the exploding mobil music market.

    Combining XM and Sirius would ease a price war for content, reduce marketing costs and provide other cost efficiencies.
     
  4. MatS

    MatS Screenwriter

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  5. Joe McCabe

    Joe McCabe Second Unit

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    While I'm praying the rumors of a merger aren't true, I wouldn't absolutely count it out, just because Karmazan is denying it.

    I'm sure he wouldn't admit to talks, unless there was a deal in place.
     
  6. Ronald Epstein

    Ronald Epstein Administrator
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    This is what a lot of us on other XM boards
    and usenet groups are speculating.

    Not saying that the news is true or false, but
    a lot of new agencies apparantly latched onto
    some news source they thought was reputable.
     
  7. WillG

    WillG Producer

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    I also share some of Ron's fears. If there was a merger, I can't see Mel not staying on as CEO. And then, we get FM like programming. Plus if you a fan of Opie and Anthony, you can look forward to the re-instatement of the Howard Stern gag order (that is if they aren't outright let go whenever their contract runs out. And of course, there is the question of montly rates. We all know how cable companies operate when they are the only game in town. I really hope this does not happen, but it does seem as if there is some weight behind this rumor.
     
  8. Bryan_O

    Bryan_O Agent

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    I can't imagine the FCC or FTC would allow this without some sort of price control guarantee or price cap regulation like they do with many of the cable systems, and I see this as a bad thing for both companies.

    Even if this could happen let's speculate what would happen to existing radio equipment. I'm guessing that the systems are not "compatible" with each other. So if a merger were to take place would they scrap one of the systems to beef up the other, or simulcast the same programming to each system keeping legacy XM/Sirius radios useful? Can the Satellites even be reprogrammed to broadcast to the other system, or are they equipment specific? To me that's the only way they could make the merger to their benefit- to drastically reduce costs by cutting studios, reduce R&D to only one system, and to kill a couple of sats. Then, would there be a bandwidth issue with music content, other programming, NFL, Baseball, Howard and others that I'm sure there are semi-long term deals with?

    My guess is that there have been talks, maybe not Mel and Panero directly, but there still was a meeting. If that's the case I was just trying to figure out the possible ramifications
     
  9. ScottCarr

    ScottCarr Second Unit

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    I can see the FCC and the FTC apporving it. This form of media is completely unnecessary due to an existing infrastructure across the country.

    If the merger was to occur they would definitiely be sensitive to pricing. Raising the prices too much could very lead to a number of on the fence subscribers to dump the service and opt for an Ipod or similar device connected to their systems.

    if they keep it affordable and the portable players are a big success the new company will attract the younger generations. Incorporated into a cell phone profits will be beyond belief.

    just my thoughts
     

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