XM, Sirius Not Talking Of Merger In Canada
April 10, 2008 at 5:31 AM (PT)
Satellite radio companies XM and SIRIUS are on the brink of merging in the U.S., but their CANADIAN counterparts are holding firm as rivals, even if it's only for a bit longer, reports THE GLOBE AND MAIL. The head of XM CANADA's parent company, CANADIAN SATELLITE RADIO HOLDINGS INC., told analysts YESTERDAY (4/9), that the U.S. Department of Justice's recent approval of the merger brings the two AMERICAN companies "one step closer" to consolidating.
However, until final clearance from the FCC is granted in the U.S., XM CANADA is not changing its approach to competing with SIRIUS CANADA. When asked whether the two have held talks on consolidating their operations, the company said it's too early to comment.
"We're going to wait to see what the FCC says and we'll look at our options accordingly," said CANADIAN SATELLITE RADIO CEO MICHAEL MOSKOWITZ. "It's a little premature at this point to talk about that." A decision by the FCC is expected at any time. A merger of the two U.S. companies will almost certainly force similar consolidation in CANADA, since the CANADIAN affiliates rely on their AMERICAN counterparts for much of their programming.
XM Canada Has Strong Quarter
Meanwhile, XM CANADA parent CANADIAN SATELLITE RADIO HOLDINGS reported second fiscal quarter ended February 29, 2008, reporting revenues jumping 89% to C$9.2 million, resulting in a narrower loss, from C$27.06 million to C$17.77 million (C$0.57 to C$0.37 per share). Average Monthly Subscription Revenue per Subscriber increased from C$10.90 to C$11.61 for the quarter.
"Subscriber growth, which is the true barometer of the health of our business, continues to increase significantly as we benefit from our many competitive advantages, including our agreements with 60 per cent of the Canadian automotive market, extensive retail network with more than 5,500 outlets, unique strategic partnerships and exceptional programming," said MOSKOWITZ. "The number of self-paying subscribers continues to increase and represent a majority of total subscriber growth. As our self-paying subscriber base grows, our financial and cash positions improve. With our current momentum, we are on our way to approaching cash flow breakeven as early as the third quarter of 2008. Given the strength of our business and our competitive position in the marketplace, we believe we are strategically well positioned for the future."