updated 12:40 pm EST, Tue November 13, 2007
Sirius Shareholders on XM
Sirius on Tuesday revealed that its shareholders voted in favor of the proposed merger with XM, bringing the two satellite radio providers closer to completing the deal. Nearly all of those invested in Sirius (96 percent) voted this way, Sirius says. Advisors have also backed the deal arguing that the shared costs would reduce overhead and save both Sirius and XM from having to market against each other or land exclusive deals with car and electronics makers to include satellite radios in their products.
Both satellite networks have received stiff opposition from the National Association of Broadcasters, which claims that a single satellite radio provider would constitute an illegal monopoly but is also believed to be protecting terrestrial radio from the effects of declining listener numbers. In return, Sirius and XM have argued that they compete both against land-based radio and digital sources of music such as iPods and Internet audio streams. They also contend that rates would drop as the result of a merger and have already proposed new rates that lower the overall cost while also letting users hand-pick stations from one service while subscribing to the full range of another.