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SIRI / XM Prepare Merger Announcement (Feb. 19)


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#1 of 30 OFFLINE   Chris

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Posted February 19 2007 - 12:41 AM

http://www.nypost.co....ter_lauria.htm

While still speculative, several sources (Fox, BusinessWeek, NY Post) are now reporting that an announcement is imminent today. The agreement, which retains mostly SIRI management staff, unifies 12 million subscribers under one umbrella and provides a significant lift in bandwidth, as duplicated bandwidth can be unified and make way for different content.

(admin: please edit my thread title, screwed that up with the )
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#2 of 30 OFFLINE   Blu

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Posted February 19 2007 - 02:23 AM

I guess it is way to early to speculate how this will effect our current hardware.

I mean if they start combining channels there will have to be a major restructuring/combining of the channels right?

Maybe they will put the NFL channel next to the MLB channel for example.

#3 of 30 OFFLINE   Chris

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Posted February 19 2007 - 02:54 AM

A merger would result in a yearly savings of about $7B, some analysts figure, which immediately boosts profitability. Because you'd be able to share satellite space, a phase it would allow both signal types to carry the new unified programming.

Some changes that would be certain to happen:

* Code-Share enterprises would dissappear. A merger would basically call for an end agreements with terrestrial radio providers, so commercials would be gone, and there would be no more channels programmed to match ala XM now.
* Other Code-Share enterprises would be bought out. Mark it: CBS radio would immediately buy out O&A's contract and make them a terrestrial exclusive. Exposure to a much larger satellite base as well as the fact that a merged company would have a far more effective means to sell ads would almost require CBS to make the move to not share content with the new satellite company. I see lots of threads talking about Howard or O&A want this or that, forget all of it.. if there is a merger, CBS will be the one who pulls the strings and makes O&A go terrestrial just to protect their value to CBS.
* They would instantly be the largest marketplace for full-sports feeds. MLB, NFL, NASCAR, NHL, and many college sports would be unified under a single provider.
* Both have strong resources in combination satellite & terrestrial technology; unification of those helps compliment the strengths of each other and shore up weaknesses.
* If they were ever going to merge, pressure is now. The current FCC board has said they would greenlight it after originally saying they wouldn't. So they know they can get it done. There are no certainties that a future board appointed by an unknown future president will have such similar feelings. Figuring a 12-month to 15-month window for full FCC clearance, they would have to get this announced before the end of the month in order to guarantee completion before the 2008 election cycle begins in full (Summer 2008) to prevent it from being tabled for political reasons.
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#4 of 30 OFFLINE   Blu

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Posted February 19 2007 - 02:57 AM

While a unified sports entity really makes this attractive it also would put pressure on the company to raise the monthly price.
There would be no reason not to since they wouldn't have to compete with anyone else.

Color me mixed emotional.

#5 of 30 OFFLINE   Brent T

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Posted February 19 2007 - 04:29 AM

I believe they will hold off on raising the price however as with all things its bound to happen.

As I have said before XM isnt the enemy, its old fashion radio and hopefully with both services combined they will offer us an even bigger and better pay service.

#6 of 30 OFFLINE   Blu

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Posted February 19 2007 - 04:38 AM

I don't think of XM as an enemy, I just think that we as consumers are better served by two competing services.

Although I am intrigued by the idea of all of the sports under one roof.

#7 of 30 OFFLINE   Brent T

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Posted February 19 2007 - 04:57 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Blu
I don't think of XM as an enemy, I just think that we as consumers are better served by two competing services.

Although I am intrigued by the idea of all of the sports under one roof.


I use to believe that, however I think XM is the small competitor, the major competition is and always will be old fashion radio. Sirius's goal is to take people from "free" radio, not from XM. You can see that by what they have done with their talent.

Sirius/XM still have a lot of work to do because of the major competition, so I dont think we will have much to worry about as far as a competitive market situation.

#8 of 30 OFFLINE   James St

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Posted February 19 2007 - 07:13 AM

Official...

Quote:
SIRIUS and XM to Combine in $13 Billion Merger of Equals

Provides Consumers with Enhanced Content, Greater Choices and Accelerated Technological Innovation

Enables Satellite Radio to Better Compete in Rapidly Evolving Audio Entertainment Industry

Extraordinary Value Creation for Shareholders

Mel Karmazin to Serve as Chief Executive Officer and Gary Parsons to Serve as Chairman of Combined Company

WASHINGTON and NEW YORK, Feb. 19 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- XM Satellite Radio (NASDAQ: XMSR) and SIRIUS Satellite Radio (NASDAQ: SIRI) today announced that they have entered into a definitive agreement, under which the companies will be combined in a tax-free, all-stock merger of equals with a combined enterprise value of approximately $13 billion, which includes net debt of approximately $1.6 billion.

Under the terms of the agreement, XM shareholders will receive a fixed exchange ratio of 4.6 shares of SIRIUS common stock for each share of XM they own. XM and SIRIUS shareholders will each own approximately 50 percent of the combined company.

Mel Karmazin, currently Chief Executive Officer of SIRIUS, will become Chief Executive Officer of the combined company and Gary Parsons, currently Chairman of XM, will become Chairman of the combined company. The new company's board of directors will consist of 12 directors, including Messrs. Karmazin and Parsons, four independent members designated by each company, as well as one representative from each of General Motors and American Honda. Hugh Panero, the Chief Executive Officer of XM, will continue in his current role until the anticipated close of the merger.

The combined company will benefit from a highly experienced management team from both companies with extensive industry knowledge in radio, media, consumer electronics, OEM engineering and technology. Further management appointments will be announced prior to closing. The companies will continue to operate independently until the transaction is completed and will work together to determine the combined company's corporate name and headquarters location prior to closing.

The combination creates a nationwide audio entertainment provider with combined 2006 revenues of approximately $1.5 billion based on analysts' consensus estimates. Today the companies have approximately 14 million combined subscribers. Together, SIRIUS and XM will create a stronger platform for future innovation within the audio entertainment industry and will provide significant benefits to all constituencies, including:

* Greater Programming and Content Choices -- The combined company is
committed to consumer choice, including offering consumers the ability
to pick and choose the channels and content they want on a more a la
carte basis. The combined company will also provide consumers with a
broader selection of content, including a wide range of commercial-free
music channels, exclusive and non-exclusive sports coverage, news,
talk, and entertainment programming. Together, XM and SIRIUS will be
able to improve on products such as real-time traffic and rear-seat
video and introduce new ones such as advanced data services including
enhanced traffic, weather and infotainment offerings.

* Accelerated Technological Innovation -- The merger will enable the
combined company to develop and introduce a wider range of lower cost,
easy-to-use, and multi-functional devices through efficiencies in chip
set and radio design and procurement. Such innovation is essential to
remaining competitive in the consumer electronics-driven world of audio
entertainment.

* Benefits to OEM and Retail Partners -- The combined company will offer
automakers and retailers the opportunity to provide a broader content
offering to their customers. Consumer electronics retailers, including
Best Buy, Circuit City, RadioShack, Wal-Mart and others, will benefit
from enhanced product offerings that should allow satellite radio to
compete more effectively.

* Enhanced Financial Performance -- This transaction will enhance the
long-term financial success of satellite radio by allowing the combined
company to better manage its costs through sales and marketing and
subscriber acquisition efficiencies, satellite fleet synergies, combined
R&D and other benefits from economies of scale. Wall Street equity
analysts have published estimates of the present value of cost synergies
ranging from $3 billion to $7 billion.

* More Competitive Audio Entertainment Provider -- The combination of an
enhanced programming lineup with improved technology, distribution and
financials will better position satellite radio to compete for
consumers' attention and entertainment dollars against a host of
products and services in the highly competitive and rapidly evolving
audio entertainment marketplace. In addition to existing competition
from free "over-the-air" AM and FM radio as well as iPods and mobile
phone streaming, satellite radio will face new challenges from the rapid
growth of HD Radio, Internet radio and next generation wireless
technologies.

"We are excited for the many opportunities that an XM and SIRIUS combination will provide consumers," said Gary Parsons, Chairman of XM Satellite Radio and Hugh Panero, CEO of XM Satellite Radio, in a joint statement. "The combined company will be better positioned to compete effectively with the continually expanding array of entertainment alternatives that consumers have embraced since the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) first granted our satellite radio licenses a decade ago."

"This combination is the next logical step in the evolution of audio entertainment," said Mel Karmazin, CEO of SIRIUS Satellite Radio. "Together, our best-in-class management team and programming content will create unprecedented choice for consumers, while creating long-term value for shareholders of both companies. The combined company will be positioned to capitalize on SIRIUS and XM's complementary distribution and licensing agreements to enhance availability of satellite radios, offer expanded content to subscribers, drive increased advertising revenue and reduce expenses. Each of our companies has a strong commitment to providing listeners the broadest range of music, news, sports and entertainment and the best customer service possible. We look forward to sharing the benefits of the exciting new growth opportunities this combination will provide with all of our stakeholders."

The transaction is subject to approval by both companies' shareholders, the satisfaction of customary closing conditions and regulatory review and approvals, including antitrust agencies and the FCC. Pending regulatory approval, the companies expect the transaction to be completed by the end of 2007.

SIRIUS's financial advisor on the transaction is Morgan Stanley and Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP and Wiley Rein LLP are acting as legal counsel. XM's financial advisor on the transaction is J.P. Morgan Securities Inc. and Skadden Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP; Jones Day; and Latham & Watkins LLP are acting as legal counsel.

Conference Call and Webcast Information

The companies will hold a joint conference call and webcast on Tuesday, February 20, 2007 at 8:30 AM ET to discuss this announcement. The conference call can be monitored by dialing 800-573-4840 within the U.S. and 617-224-4326 for all other locations, passcode 29490052. The webcast can be accessed at http://www.sirius.com/ and http://www.xmradio.com/ as well as on their satellite radio services by tuning to SIRIUS channel 122 and XM channel 200. The webcast will be archived at http://www.sirius.com/ and http://www.xmradio.com/.

About SIRIUS

SIRIUS, "The Best Radio on Radio," delivers more than 130 channels of the best programming in all of radio. SIRIUS is the original and only home of 100% commercial free music channels in satellite radio, offering 69 music channels. SIRIUS also delivers 65 channels of sports, news, talk, entertainment, traffic, weather and data. SIRIUS is the Official Satellite Radio Partner of the NFL, NASCAR, NBA and NHL, and broadcasts live play-by-play games of the NFL, NBA and NHL, as well as live NASCAR races. All SIRIUS programming is available for a monthly subscription fee of only $12.95.

SIRIUS Internet Radio (SIR) is a CD-quality, Internet-only version of the SIRIUS radio service, without the use of a radio, for the monthly subscription fee of $12.95. SIR delivers more than 75 channels of talk, entertainment, sports, and 100% commercial free music.

SIRIUS products for the car, truck, home, RV and boat are available in more than 25,000 retail locations, including Best Buy, Circuit City, Crutchfield, Costco, Target, Wal-Mart, Sam's Club, RadioShack and at http://shop.sirius.com/.

SIRIUS radios are offered in vehicles from Audi, Bentley, BMW, Chrysler, Dodge, Ford, Infiniti, Jaguar, Jeep®, Land Rover, Lexus, Lincoln, Mercury, Maybach, Mazda, Mercedes-Benz, MINI, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Rolls Royce, Scion, Toyota, Volkswagen, and Volvo. Hertz also offers SIRIUS in its rental cars at major locations around the country.

Click on http://www.sirius.com/ to listen to SIRIUS live, or to purchase a SIRIUS radio and subscription.

About XM

XM (NASDAQ: XMSR) is America's number one satellite radio company with more than 7.6 million subscribers. Broadcasting live daily from studios in Washington, DC, New York City, Chicago, the Country Music Hall of Fame in Nashville, Toronto and Montreal, XM's 2007 lineup includes more than 170 digital channels of choice from coast to coast: commercial-free music, premier sports, news, talk radio, comedy, children's and entertainment programming; and the most advanced traffic and weather information.

XM, the leader in satellite-delivered entertainment and data services for the automobile market through partnerships with General Motors, Honda, Hyundai, Nissan, Porsche, Subaru, Suzuki and Toyota is available in 140 different vehicle models for 2007. XM's industry-leading products are available at consumer electronics retailers nationwide. For more information about XM hardware, programming and partnerships, please visit http://www.xmradio.com/.

Forward Looking Statements

This press release contains "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such statements include, but are not limited to, statements about the benefits of the business combination transaction involving Sirius Satellite Radio Inc. and XM Satellite Radio Holdings Inc., including potential synergies and cost savings and the timing thereof, future financial and operating results, the combined company's plans, objectives, expectations and intentions with respect to future operations, products and services; and other statements identified by words such as "anticipate," "believe," "plan," "estimate," "expect," "intend," "will," "should," "may," or words of similar meaning. Such forward- looking statements are based upon the current beliefs and expectations of SIRIUS' and XM's management and are inherently subject to significant business, economic and competitive uncertainties and contingencies, many of which are difficult to predict and generally beyond the control of SIRIUS and XM. Actual results may differ materially from the results anticipated in these forward-looking statements.

The following factors, among others, could cause actual results to differ materially from the anticipated results or other expectations expressed in the forward-looking statement: general business and economic conditions; the performance of financial markets and interest rates; the ability to obtain governmental approvals of the transaction on a timely basis; the failure of SIRIUS and XM shareholders to approve the transaction; the failure to realize synergies and cost-savings from the transaction or delay in realization thereof; the businesses of SIRIUS and XM may not be combined successfully, or such combination may take longer, be more difficult, time-consuming or costly to accomplish than expected; and operating costs and business disruption following the merger, including adverse effects on employee retention and on our business relationships with third parties, including manufacturers of radios, retailers, automakers and programming providers. Additional factors that could cause SIRIUS' and XM's results to differ materially from those described in the forward-looking statements can be found in SIRIUS' and XM's Annual Reports on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2005, and Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q for the quarters ended March 31, 2006, June 30, 2006 and September 30, 2006 which are filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (the "SEC") and available at the SEC's Internet site (http://www.sec.gov/). The information set forth herein speaks only as of the date hereof, and Sirius and XM disclaim any intention or obligation to update any forward looking statements as a result of developments occurring after the date of this press release.

Important Additional Information Will be Filed with the SEC

This communication is being made in respect of the proposed business combination involving SIRIUS and XM. In connection with the proposed transaction, SIRIUS plans to file with the SEC a Registration Statement on Form S-4 containing a Joint Proxy Statement/Prospectus and each of SIRIUS and XM plan to file with the SEC other documents regarding the proposed transaction. The definitive Joint Proxy Statement/Prospectus will be mailed to stockholders of SIRIUS and XM. INVESTORS AND SECURITY HOLDERS OF SIRIUS AND XM ARE URGED TO READ THE JOINT PROXY STATEMENT/PROSPECTUS AND OTHER DOCUMENTS FILED WITH THE SEC CAREFULLY IN THEIR ENTIRETY WHEN THEY BECOME AVAILABLE BECAUSE THEY WILL CONTAIN IMPORTANT INFORMATION ABOUT THE PROPOSED TRANSACTION.

Investors and security holders will be able to obtain free copies of the Registration Statement and the Joint Proxy Statement/Prospectus (when available) and other documents filed with the SEC by SIRIUS and XM through the web site maintained by the SEC at http://www.sec.gov/. Free copies of the Registration Statement and the Joint Proxy Statement/Prospectus (when available) and other documents filed with the SEC can also be obtained by directing a request to Sirius Satellite Radio Inc., 1221 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10020, Attention: Investor Relations or by directing a request to XM Satellite Radio Holdings Inc., 1500 Eckington Place, NE Washington, DC 20002, Attention: Investor Relations.

SIRIUS, XM and their respective directors and executive officers and other persons may be deemed to be participants in the solicitation of proxies in respect of the proposed transaction. Information regarding SIRIUS' directors and executive officers is available in its Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2005, which was filed with the SEC on March 13, 2006, and its proxy statement for its 2006 annual meeting of stockholders, which was filed with the SEC on April 21, 2006, and information regarding XM's directors and executive officers is available in XM's Annual Report on Form 10-K, for the year ended December 31, 2005, which was filed with the SEC on March 3, 2006 and its proxy statement for its 2006 annual meeting of shareholders, which was filed with the SEC on April 25, 2006. Other information regarding the participants in the proxy solicitation and a description of their direct and indirect interests, by security holdings or otherwise, will be contained in the Joint Proxy Statement/Prospectus and other relevant materials to be filed with the SEC when they become available.

Contacts

SIRIUS
Media Relations
Patrick Reilly
212-901-6646
PReilly@siriusradio.com

Investor Relations
Paul Blalock
212-584-5174
PBlalock@siriusradio.com

Hooper Stevens
212-901-6718
HStevens@siriusradio.com

XM
Media Relations
Nathaniel Brown
212-708-6170
Nathaniel.Brown@xmradio.com

Chance Patterson
202-380-4318
Chance.Patterson@xmradio.com

Investor Relations
Joseph Wilkinson
202-380-4008
Joe.Wilkinson@xmradio.com

Richard Sloane
202-380-1439
Richard.Sloane@xmradio.com

SOURCE: SIRIUS Satellite Radio; XM Satellite Radio

CONTACT: Patrick Reilly, Media Relations, +1-212-901-6646,
PReilly@siriusradio.com, or Paul Blalock, Investor Relations,
+1-212-584-5174, PBlalock@siriusradio.com, or Hooper Stevens, Investors
Relations, +1-212-901-6718, HStevens@siriusradio.com, all of SIRIUS, or
Nathaniel Brown, Media Relations, +1-212-708-6170,
Nathaniel.Brown@xmradio.com, or Chance Patterson, Media Relations,
+1-202-380-4318, Chance.Patterson@xmradio.com, or Joseph Wilkinson, Investor
Relations, +1-202-380-4008, Joe.Wilkinson@xmradio.com, or Richard Sloane,
Investor Relations, +1-202-380-1439, Richard.Sloane@xmradio.com, all of XM

Web site: http://www.xmradio.com/
http://www.sirius.com/
http://shop.sirius.com/



#9 of 30 OFFLINE   Kevin Crays

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Posted February 19 2007 - 07:41 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brent T
I use to believe that, however I think XM is the small competitor, the major competition is and always will be old fashion radio. Sirius's goal is to take people from "free" radio, not from XM. You can see that by what they have done with their talent.

Sirius/XM still have a lot of work to do because of the major competition, so I dont think we will have much to worry about as far as a competitive market situation.

That may be where they want grab listeners from, but that's not their competitor. They compete against each other to get subscribers. Once there's only one pay service, those who want such a service will be held hostage to the lone provider. This is no different than Cable in most markets (though Sat has slowed increases somewhat).

Monopolies are always bad for consumers and terrestrial radio isn't an option for those that want something other than hot country, classic rock, modern rock, rap, R&B and CHR (and in some markets they don't have those options) formats that typically have very small playlists.

#10 of 30 OFFLINE   WillG

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Posted February 19 2007 - 07:50 AM

Oh boy. I'm not sure this seems good for XM subscribers and O&A fans. I went with XM because they had the reputation for being deeper in their music selections whereas Sirius had more of an FM without commercials approach. I got into satellite in the first place because I wanted to escape the repeatedness of FM radio. It seems as if more of the Sirius management will be retained than XM. As for O&A, this can't be good for them. Karmazin and Stern and O&A already hate each other. Howard will once again be able to have them gagged if he wants to. And that is even if they stay a part of the new company, which might not happen due to CBS's stake in them.

Quote:
The combined company is
committed to consumer choice, including offering consumers the ability
to pick and choose the channels and content they want on a more a la
carte basis.

While this might seem like a nice idea, the suspicious person in me suspects that this could be a way to charge premiums for certain sports, Stern and O&A (if they remain a part of the company)
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#11 of 30 OFFLINE   Chris

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Posted February 19 2007 - 07:54 AM

There is NO WAY in the world CBS will not immediately move to buy out O&A's contract from XM. They would be idiots to let O&A stay in a merged company.. There will be incredible pressure going on there to make O&A leave.. NOW or very soon in order for CBS to distance itself and for it to not time-share or in any way promote an entity that will be merged, growing, and make up a considerable marketshare.
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#12 of 30 OFFLINE   Todd Henry

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Posted February 19 2007 - 07:54 AM

The ala carte information is interesting. I wonder if each sport might be a separate option much like Extra Innings/Sunday Ticket today.

#13 of 30 OFFLINE   Jeff Gatie

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Posted February 19 2007 - 08:03 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Todd Henry
The ala carte information is interesting. I wonder if each sport might be a separate option much like Extra Innings/Sunday Ticket today.

I hope so. But it will probably be more like cable TV, with "packages" rather than a per channel charge. I'd probably make out on the per channel thing. Give me Stern, Fox News and Talk, Patriot, The Bridge, Underground Garage, First Wave, the new 90's Alt, Standards (Sinatra), Coffeehouse, the Christmas music and the new Punk Channel and I'm all set.

Still, I like having all the channels to choose from and hate to think I'm missing a good genre because of price.

#14 of 30 OFFLINE   Chris

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Posted February 19 2007 - 08:23 AM

Another confirm, more details. Basically as I thought.. since SIRI has a larger cap value, they will be named as buying out XM, and it appears as though the SIRIUS product name is what will survive.

(post #1)

http://www.bloomberg...l6qM&refer=home

Sirius to Acquire Larger Rival XM for $4.57 Billion (Update1)

Quote:
Feb. 19 (Bloomberg) -- Sirius Satellite Radio Inc., the second-largest U.S. pay radio service, agreed to buy its larger rival XM Satellite Radio Holdings Inc. for $4.57 billion in stock, combining the only two companies in the industry.

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#15 of 30 OFFLINE   Brent T

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Posted February 19 2007 - 08:39 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin Crays
That may be where they want grab listeners from, but that's not their competitor. They compete against each other to get subscribers. Once there's only one pay service, those who want such a service will be held hostage to the lone provider. This is no different than Cable in most markets (though Sat has slowed increases somewhat).

Monopolies are always bad for consumers and terrestrial radio isn't an option for those that want something other than hot country, classic rock, modern rock, rap, R&B and CHR (and in some markets they don't have those options) formats that typically have very small playlists.


Couldn't disagree more. Free radio is their competition. Sirius and XM had to convince consumers that there was a product available that is worth paying for. These consumers are use to getting this service for free since the dawn of the radio. Sure XM and Sirius were in competition but the bigger competitor was free radio. This is a new medium and those who choose to join one of these services in such an early stage were niche consumers, thats not who these companies were after, well at least not Sirius. Sirius vs XM is just a small battle in the war that is a pay service vs. a free service.

Terrestrial radio not being an option as you put it is a bit absurd in my opinion. You have an option as a consumer pay for what you believe to be a better product or stick with the product that has almost zero monetary cost to you.
People aren't forced to have cable tv, satellite tv, or satellite radio. Its just that they are better options in most cases. I would have a hard time buying Sirius being a monopoly when I can tune in and hear hockey, football, baseball, music, talk radio all for free.

#16 of 30 OFFLINE   Blu

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Posted February 19 2007 - 08:54 AM

Xirius or SM?

Or will the brand name stay as Sirius?

#17 of 30 OFFLINE   Chris

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Posted February 19 2007 - 08:56 AM

Brand will apparently become SIRIUS.
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#18 of 30 OFFLINE   James St

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Posted February 19 2007 - 10:00 AM

From Bloomberg...

Quote:
The name of the combined company and the location of its headquarters will be decided later.


#19 of 30 OFFLINE   Henry Gale

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Posted February 19 2007 - 01:27 PM

By Laura Petrecca, USA TODAY
Satellite radio giants XM (XMSR) and Sirius (XMSR), once fierce rivals, announced on Monday that they will combine forces in an all-stock merger.

The deal is structured as a "merger of equals" with XM stockholders getting 4.6 shares of Sirius common stock for each share of XM stock. XM and Sirius shareholders will each own 50% of the new company.

On Friday, XM closed at $13.98 a share and Sirius closed at $3.70.

Sirius CEO Mel Karmazin will become CEO of the combined entity, which does not yet have a name. XM Chairman Gary Parsons will be chairman.
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#20 of 30 OFFLINE   Karynak

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Posted February 19 2007 - 03:36 PM

I hope this does not and will not in the future affect my lifetime subscription. That is actually my main concern. Otherwise, my lawyer will get more work.


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