Deutsche Bank analyst James Dix issued a report today regarding Sirius' subscriber numbers for Q4 2007.
8.322m YE subs beat our 8.200m estimate by 1.5%
Sirius announced Thursday afternoon 8.322m YE07 subs, 122k (1.5%) above our 8.200m estimate, and over the company's 8m+ guidance. Viewed another way, 4Q07 net subscriber additions of 655k were 21%above our 540k estimate. That said, 4Q07 net subscriber additions were down c28% from 4Q06.
Expects 4Q07 FCF well above 4Q06, which would be above DBe
Sirius said that it expects to report free cash flow for 4Q07 well above lastyear's level of $30m. This would put reported free cash flow nicely aboveour $24m estimate.
Churn metrics in line, implying gross adds above our estimates
With full-year churn of 2.2% (self-pay 1.6%) in line with 2.2% DBe, Sirius'4Q gross subscriber additions appear to have closed out the year well above our 1.071m estimate. With the full-year results to be released in February, we will be able to see how much of this came from the strengthening OEM channel as opposed to retail.
Maintain Buy and $4 target price
We rate SIRI a Buy as a play on economical growth of satellite radio in U.S.vehicles and our assumption of over 50% probability of regulatory approvalof its pending merger with XM Satellite Radio. Risks include changing tech-nology, subscriber growth volatility, rising costs, and adverse legal devel-opments (including failure to gain merger approval).