Quite often investors hear the term competitive landscape, but really do not look deeper into what that means. With that in mind, we thought it might be good to look at a real life sample of some audio content and where it is available. For this example, I will point to the American League Championship Series between the Boston Red Sox, and the Cleveland Indians.
XM, the exclusive satellite radio provider for Major League Baseball will broadcast all of the games.
RED SOX RADIO NETWORK
The Red Sox Radio Network is made up of 65 radio stations covering all of New England
CLEVELAND INDIANS RADIO NETWORK
The Cleveland Indians Radio Network is made up of 28 radio stations in three states
ESPN RADIO NETWORK
ESPN, a national sports provider on television as well as radio. ESPN covers each game on an extensive network of 277 terrestrial radio stations covering 49 states.
Mobil networks include the ability to subscribe to catch game audio on mobile devices such as cell phones.
Major league teams all allow subscribers to listen to game live over the Internet
Thus, what we have is many forms of audio available to consumers. Regardless of market, fans have several choices to consider when they want to listen to a game. All of these mediums are competing for the ears of the consumer. The argument that terrestrial radio does not compete with satellite radio does not hold water. Nor does the argument that cell phones, and the Internet are not a component of the competitive landscape.
The subject of localism is oft put on the table with regards to terrestrial radio. They claim that they do not compete on a national scale, but that satellite radio does offer competition on a local basis. If one were to step back and think about this, you would see the failure in such logic. If I am driving my car in New York, do I care what is on the radio in San Diego? Do I care if the channel I am listening to is the exact same thing as I am hearing? To me, one consumer driving in New York, what is on the radio elsewhere is immaterial.
The fact of the matter is that terrestrial radio and satellite radio both have distinctive advantages and drawbacks. Terrestrial can expand their reach simply by networking, simulcasting, and syndicating their content to as small or large an audience as they want. Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, and many others are available on terrestrial radio on a large scale basis. One distinct advantage for terrestrial radio is that they are the unique carrier of specific local content such as a mayoral election, etc.
The competitive landscape is indeed robust, and multi-faceted. This can not be denied, and content such as the ALCS series demonstrates this quite well. The competitive landscape is indeed broad.
Position - Long Sirius, Long XM