SiriusBuzz All Things SiriusXM Satellite Radio 2015-11-19T23:01:03Z Spencer Osborne <![CDATA[Baba Booey Turns 25]]> 2015-08-27T16:41:06Z 2015-08-27T16:41:06Z → Read More]]> Gary Dell'AbateBaba Booey!  It is hard to believe, but the term made famous on the Howard Stern Show is now 25 years old.  Has that much time really passed?  Wow!  Howard Stern and SiriusXM have announced "Booey 25," an extensive special celebrating the 25th anniversary of "Baba Booey." The specials will air on Howard Stern's exclusive SiriusXM channels Howard 100 and Howard 101.

Internationally known as a crowd shout-out at golf tournaments, during TV news live shots, as a tribute to Howard Stern in scripted TV shows, and more, the name "Baba Booey" started as a simple mistake.  In the summer of 1990, on the Howard Stern Show, producer Gary Dell'Abate mis-named cartoon character Baba Looey as "Baba Booey" and has been hilariously taunted for it for 25 years and counting, by Stern, his staff, celebrities and fans.

The radio event will feature audio of the name's first utterance, then 25 years of now-legendary Baba Booey and Gary Dell'Abate moments from the Howard Stern Show.  "Booey 25" will also track the name's infusion into popular culture.

"Booey 25" will air on Howard 101. The broadcasts will also be available through the SiriusXM App on smartphones and other connected devices, as well as online at The entire special will be available on SiriusXM On Demand through the SiriusXM App for smartphones and other mobile devices and online at For more broadcast info, please visit and

]]> 1 Spencer Osborne <![CDATA[SiriusXM Announces Additional $2 Billion In Stock Buyback]]> 2015-08-27T16:36:21Z 2015-08-27T16:35:52Z

→ Read More]]> money-dollar-signSiriusXM, the company that has already bought back billions of dollars of its own stock, announced that its Board of Directors has approved an additional $2 billion of common stock repurchases.  The SiriusXM mantra of returning value to shareholders in the form of buying its own stock will continue into the foreseeable future.  Shares of common stock may be purchased from time to time on the open market and in privately negotiated transactions, including in accelerated stock repurchase transactions and transactions with Liberty Media and its affiliates.  The Company will fund the repurchases through cash on hand, future cash flow from operations and future borrowings

Since 2012 the stock repurchase program (inclusive of this latest announcement) will be an impressive $8 billion.  This program is now getting to the point where these share buybacks are becoming more and more meaningful to shareholders.  Essentially, the supply of stock was once massive.  Limiting that supply can be a big boost to driving shareholder value.  Over the past couple of years the program has been great at creating price stability and a good foundation to support the stock.

Liberty Media and its affiliates control about 60% of the SiriusXM shares.  If Liberty does not sell any stock, the percentage of Liberty ownership will increase.  There is potential, in the months ahead, that Liberty renews a possible effort to buy out remaining stock.  This could prove lucrative for shareholders that play SiriusXM and Liberty stock.

The bottom line is that there is now another $2 billion committed to support the stock.  This is a luxury that many companies do not have.  Essentially SiriusXM feels that the stock is undervalued, and buying its own stock is a good method to help correct that situation.  Stay Tuned!


Spencer Osborne <![CDATA[SiriusXM Posts Good Quarter – Ups Guidance]]> 2015-07-29T14:05:39Z 2015-07-29T14:04:54Z → Read More]]> money-cash-up-arrow-lineThe big news with SiriusXM's Q2 was not that they hit the analysts targets, but rather what the future holds in store.  The company reported a profit of 2 cents per share on revenue of $1.12 billion and a profit of $102.8 million.  SiriusXM raised its subscriber guidance from 1.4 million additions this year to 1.8 million.  The company also raised its revenue forecast to $4.5 billion.  Highlights of the quarter included:

  • Self-pay Net Additions Increase 37% to 519,000
  • Record Second Quarter Revenue up 8% to $1.12 Billion
  • Net Income of $103 Million, Including a Pre-tax $108 Million Settlement
  • Adjusted EBITDA Climbs 12% to a Record $415 Million
  • Free Cash Flow Reaches $371 Million, up 11%
  • GAAP EPS of $0.02; Adjusted EPS of $0.03, Excluding Settlement

It is also notable that SiriusXM repurchased 144 million of its own shares during the quarter for $560 million.  The company improved its churn to 1.6%, which would seem to indicate that the product remains sticky.  The success in converting trial subscriptions to self paying subscriptions was about 41%, in line with recent quarters.  The company reports an average revenue per user per month at $12.42. and a subscriber acquisition cost of just $32.  This implies that the company can break even on a subscriber after just 2.5 months.

SiriusXM stock now trades in the $4 range and seems to be getting upgrades from the street.

Spencer Osborne <![CDATA[SiriusXM To Launch Bill Carter Show]]> 2015-07-08T14:56:05Z 2015-07-08T14:56:05Z → Read More]]> radiomicSiriusXM has announced that company will launch "The Bill Carter Interview," a weekly one-hour program in which esteemed former New York Times reporter and best-selling author Bill Carter will sit down with major figures from all sides of the entertainment industry and beyond.  The show will add yet another layer of breadth to the satellite radio platform, and is yet another example of some of the advantages that SiriusXM has over pure internet delivered content.

"The Bill Carter Interview" will air exclusively on SiriusXM's Insight channel 121, the groundbreaking news, information, and entertainment radio channel offering intelligent conversation with an edge.  SiriusXM has not yet announced an exact date for the show to launch, but did indicate that the show will debut this summer.  "The Bill Carter Interview" will broadcast on Mondays at 6:00 pm ET the new program will feature in-depth interviews with some of the most-talked about figures in the country. Carter will explore both the water cooler moments in popular culture as well as conduct comprehensive conversations with the individuals who are shaping the national dialogue. The show will also invite listeners to call in and join the discussion, offering them a chance to share their perspectives and ask questions of some of the biggest names in entertainment and news.

"The thing I have enjoyed most in my career as a journalist has been the opportunity to talk to fascinating, funny, and news-making people," Bill Carter said. "My SiriusXM program will be all about in-depth, engaging conversations with a full range of the performers, writers, producers, and executives who are shaping the culture today."

SiriusXM investors have seen program changes and shifts over the years, but all in all, the company has made the satellite radio platform better with additions such as this.  Perhaps this can evolve into more than once per week.  Stay Tuned!

]]> 0 Spencer Osborne <![CDATA[SiriusXM Settles Royalty Lawsuit For $210 Million]]> 2015-06-29T20:04:11Z 2015-06-29T12:52:59Z

→ Read More]]> gavel.jpgFresh off of what could only be considered a legal victory in Florida, SiriusXM Satellite Radio made a decision to settle a lawsuit regarding royalties of pre-1972 music.  The company announced Friday that it was had reached a settlement on the issue and will pay $210 million.  SiriusXM gets to use pre-1972 recordings without any additional payment through the end of 2017, and can then negotiate with parties regarding use of the recordings through 2022.

The suit originated from Flo and Eddie of the Turtles, which brought the case on behalf of themselves, and eventually sought and gained class action status.  The Turtles are most famous for their song "Happy Together".  Current royalty law only covers recordings after 1972.  SiriusXM does have a few direct deals negotiated with various parties regarding pre-1972 music.  An example is the Elvis Channel on SiriusXM.

While the settlement is expensive, a cloud over the head of SiriusXM has been removed.  The settlements may also pave the way for other settlements with companies like Pandora.  SiriusXM is a highly profitable company, and should be able to absorb the settlement without much impact on the stock price.  Stay Tuned!

Spencer Osborne <![CDATA[SiriusXM Gets “FOXier”]]> 2015-06-30T07:10:35Z 2015-06-24T19:44:10Z → Read More]]> 6-23 foxSiriusXM and Fox News have joined forces in the creation of a new news channel that will launch this Fall.  The channel will be called Fox News Headlines 24/7, and in contrast to current Fox offerings on SiriusXM, will be geared toward radio.  Currently, many popular news channels on television simulcast the coverage to satellite radio.  This concept is fine for most instances, but the medium of radio does indeed differ from television, thus, having a show built for a radio audience is a welcomed addition.

Fox News Headlines 24/7 will be staffed 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and 365 days a year.  FOX News Senior Vice President of News Jay Wallace will oversee operations of the new channel, in addition to his current responsibilities managing news at FNC.  The channel will pull from available resources at FOX News, FOX Business Network, FOX News Radio,, and

The news is quite interesting considering that Fox and SiriusXM have, at times, had a contentious relationship.  There have been periods of time where Fox content was not available on the satellite radio providers service.  This deal likely points to the successes that SiriusXM has had in carrying Fox content, and in the value that Fox sees in the satellite radio platform.  This channel will garner a pre-set on my dial.  Stay Tuned!


Spencer Osborne <![CDATA[SiriusXM Scores Court Victory In Pre-1972 Recordings]]> 2015-06-30T07:10:47Z 2015-06-24T19:33:07Z → Read More]]> 12-8 turtlesThe issue surrounding royalties for songs recorded before 1972 has not typically been a friendly one to SiriusXM.  The satellite radio provider has found itself on the losing side of an argument about the payment of royalties for music fitting into that category.  The issue arises because the royalty laws used to pay artists took effect in 1972, leaving a debated loophole of music that predates the law.

Flo and Eddie, from the Turtles, and famous for the song Happy Together filed suit in California for unauthorized use of their material, and are working their way across several states with similar suits.  The suit has even gained class action status in California.  This past week, SiriusXM actually scored a victory in the state of Florida.  The judge there sided with SiriusXM, stating that if he were to agree to the arguments of Flo and Eddie, that the court would be creating a new property right, as opposed to interpreting the law.

Regardless of the legal wranglings, it is clear that legislation around royalty rights and royalty rates needs to be addressed sooner rather than later.  SiriusXM has found itself in near constant struggles regarding the subject of royalties for the better part of a decade.

Spencer Osborne <![CDATA[Judge Certifies Class Action Suit For Pre-1972 Recordings]]> 2015-06-30T07:10:57Z 2015-05-28T13:06:05Z → Read More]]> new-gavelSiriusXM has seen better days.  The satellite radio provider was dealt a bit of a blow this week when a federal judge certified that the Flo and Eddie lawsuit regarding royalties would garner class action status.  Instead of Flo and Eddie against SiriusXM, it can now be anyone with pre-1972 music vs. SiriusXM.  The suit could carry ramifications across the digital sphere.

Judge Philip Gutierrez sided with Flo and Eddie on the matter, and seems to have agreed that the damages proposed, 100% of all revenues attributed to pre-1972 recordings are at play.  It is estimated that somewhere between 5% and 10% of  SiriusXM's revenue stream could be impacted.  With billions of dollars in revenue, the numbers are quite substantial.  Essentially, between $50 million and $100 million of each billion in revenue is on the table.  The suit goes back to August of 2009.  Sound exchange estimates that between 10% and 15% of SiriusXM's revenue is tied to pre-1972 recordings.  Either way, the numbers can grow substantially .  SiriusXM has reported roughly $20 billion in revenue since 2009.  Using a 10% figure, the exposure could be as high as $2 billion.

As class action suits go, this one can be quite scary because there is an extensive record of what songs have been played.  SiriusXM defense is to somehow demonstrate that the revenue from the play of such songs is as low as possible, because there is no real way the company can say it did not benefit from airing the music.  Stay Tuned

Spencer Osborne <![CDATA[Millennials Get Radio Show On SiriusXM]]> 2015-05-11T19:08:24Z 2015-05-11T19:08:24Z → Read More]]> millSiriusXM has announced the launch of “Career Playbook Radio,” an all-new career advice show hosted by Jim Citrin, partner at executive search firm Spencer Stuart and best-selling author on leadership and career success. “Career Playbook Radio” is focused on giving millennials, young professionals, and parents of recent college grads expert insight into getting a great job and laying the foundation for a successful career.

“Career Playbook Radio” will be a weekly conversation with top executives, industry veterans, and thought leaders sharing their personal experience and knowledge with aspiring young professionals who are seeking to carve out a distinctive place with their careers in the first decade after graduation.

Each week, “Career Playbook Radio” will feature a wide slate of leaders from top companies and institutions, including: Gail McGovern, CEO and President, American Red Cross; Justin Smith, CEO, Bloomberg Media Group; J. Patrick Doyle, CEO and President of Domino’s Pizza Inc.; Laszlo Bock, Senior Vice President of People Operations at Google Inc.; Lori Goler, Vice President of Human Resources and Recruiting at Facebook, Inc.; Kristen Fitzpatrick, Managing Director, Alumni & MBA Career and Professional Development, Harvard Business School; Admiral Eric Olson, retired Commander of U.S. Special Operations Command (SOCOM); and Soo Hong, Chief Human Resource Officer, WeWork.

“Career Playbook Radio,” will air for 6 weeks and will launch on May 16, and air Saturdays at 5:00 pm, and rebroadcast on Sundays at 10:00 am and 3:00 pm (all times Eastern) on SiriusXM Insight, channel 121.  Subscribers will also be able to listen to the show via SiriusXM On Demand on smartphones and other connected devices as well as online at

This type of content offering is somewhat unique to SiriusXM, which can create channels within its platform to suit specific content offerings that traditional radio may find limiting.  In point of fact, limited run content such as this can bring specific and even narrow demographics very real and pertinent information on a very timely basis.  In this case, young people get the opportunity to get some great career advise from top player in the field.  Stay Tuned!




Spencer Osborne <![CDATA[SiriusXM Misses On Earnings But Raises Guidance]]> 2015-05-06T00:05:58Z 2015-04-29T13:59:52Z → Read More]]> quarterly resultsSiriusXM (SIRI) reported Q1 earnings yesterday and the results were somewhat of a mixed bag.  The company reported a profit of 2 cents per share but missed analysts estimates of a 3 cent profit.  While the news of a miss may not be positive, there were many aspects of the quarter that were quite positive in nature.

  • The company reported revenue of $1.08 billion, an increase of 8%.
  • The company reported Net Income of $106 million, a 12% increase
  • The company reported a 19% spike in adjusted EBITDA to $399 million
  • Free Cash Flow was up 24% to  $276 million

In addition the company, on the heels of adding 431,000 subscribers, raised its subscriber guidance for 2015 to 1.4 million.  More impressively, the revenue guidance was also raised and now is estimated to be $4.47 billion.  SiriusXM expects adjusted EBITDA for the year to be $1.6 billion and Free Cash Flow to be $1.25 billion.

Subscriber metrics were pretty stable with self-pay churn at about 1.8%.  There is some concern in the continued drops in conversion rate, which was 40% last quarter.  The conversion rate reflects the ability of the company to covert trial subscriptions to self-paying.  This past quarter reported the lowest conversion rate to date.  The metric could be an indication that more connected and capable cars are giving consumers other options in audio entertainment.  A drop in this metric could be an indication that the price of the service is not as elastic (the ability to raise rates) as one might like to see.  That being said, the Average Revenue per User saw a slight increase to $12.26 per month.  This combined with lower Subscriber Acquisition Costs, which were down to $33 could help offset any concerns about the conversion rate.  Another positive metric was that 71% of new vehicles are being equipped with satellite radios.  This could also be an impact on the conversion rate for various reasons.  Like it or not, not every car is a good partner for satellite radio.

SiriusXM is not resting on the technology and offering front.  The company is beginning a new initiative called SXM 17 which will utilize satellite as well as LTE coverage to increase offerings and remain competitive.  SXM 17 is the next generation in the SiriusXM offering.

SiriusXM also has continued with its share buyback program.  In Q1 of 2015 the company bought back 144 million of its own shares for $534 million.  This type of action helps to keep the price of the equity stable.  At some point share buybacks can also lead to share appreciation.  In the first few weeks of April the company bought another 36 million shares bringing the year to date total to about 180 million.  All told, the company has removed about 20% of the shares from the market since the inception of the share buyback program.

As you can see, the EPS miss is not the big news here.  The company is executing on all fronts, controlling costs, and returning equity to shareholders.  SiriusXM may not be as sexy as it once was, but is is definitely established and is on course to be vary stable in the years ahead.  SXM 17 is an initiative that seems to be pretty interesting.  Stay Tuned for more detail on that.