Sirius CEO, Mel Karmazin, testified today in a hearing before the Senate Committee on Commerce on the subject of the SIRIUS XM merger. His testimony was another attempt to drive home the significant benefits for consumers if the two Satellite giants were allowed to merge. Mr. Karmazin is still sticking to his guns when it comes to the extensive competition Satellite Radio faces from a range of players in the ever evolving audio entertainment market. Here is some of his actual testimony from the hearings:
The Combined Company Will Offer Consumers More Choice At Lower Prices
The key to getting more subscribers will not be to widen the price
gap between free and what satellite radio charges. Instead, it will
be to offer consumers a better value.
The merger will allow us to lower prices. Consumers who want fewer
channels than currently offered will be able to select one or more
packages of channels for less than $12.95 per month.
Importantly, significant portions of the savings achieved through the
merger will be shared with customers immediately and in the long-term
through lower prices and improved service offerings.
Satellite Radio is a Small Part of a Highly Competitive and Ever-
Expanding Market for Audio Entertainment
The audio entertainment market today is vibrant, competitive, and
innovative, and every indication is that it will be even more so in
the future. We believe that the combination of SIRIUS and XM will be
good for consumers as it will intensify this competition, expand the
choices for consumers, and reduce prices.
The market for audio entertainment in the United States is robustly
competitive and rapidly evolving. SIRIUS and XM must compete
directly and intensely with a host of other audio providers for
The Merger Will Help Accelerate Deployment of Advanced Technology
The combined company will be able to offer consumers access to
advanced technology sooner than would otherwise occur. In
particular, the marriage of the companies' two engineering
organizations will ensure better results from each dollar invested in
research and development.
While no radio will become obsolete as a result of this transaction,
we fully expect the merger to stimulate the development of new
interoperable, highly portable, low-cost, and user-friendly devices.
It seems to me that Mr. Karmazin addresses the two major concerns about costs and the advancement of technology quite soundly for what it's worth. I don't know how you could argue against this merger being good for the consumer, yet the NAB presses on.