SiriusXM Remains on Track for 2 Million Subscriber Adds in 2012

[Satellite TODAY Insider 07-10-12] Satellite radio broadcaster SiriusXM added 622,042 net subscribers in its 2012 second quarter – a 38 percent jump from the 452,147 net subscribers added in the same period last year, the company announced July 9.

   The second quarter brings Sirius XM’s total added subscriber count in the first half of 2012 to more than 1 million net subscribers. The company projected EBITDA guidance of $875 million and free cash flow guidance of $700 million, which is relatively unchanged from the comparative period in 2011. SiriusXM currently serves approximately 22.9 million customers.
SiriusXM CEO Mel Karmazin said he now expects his company’s net new subscriber growth to approach 1.6 million and revenue to approach $3.4 billion in 2012. 
   “SiriusXM continues to demonstrate robust growth and strong operating execution despite a challenging economy.  Our second quarter subscriber gains mark a record quarter of net additions since the merger of SIRIUS and XM in July 2008,” Karmazin said in a statement. “While we continue to be conservative in the face of a weak U.S. economic outlook, customers continue to embrace our unparalleled programming lineup, allowing us to raise subscriber guidance for the second time this year.”
   SiriusXM plans to release its full second quarter 2012 financial report on Aug. 7.
    In a research note published July 9, Citi Analyst Jason Bazinet said he was impressed by SiriusXM’s projections considering the economic environment of their key markets.
“We remain buyers of Sirius XM as subscriber growth continues to be solid despite announced price increase and we expect free cash to ramp given expectations for modest capex spend,” Bazinet wrote in the report.
    In a separate report, Lazard Capital Analyst Barton Crockett also noted that improving car sales numbers was a good sign for SiriusXM’s short- and long-term health.
“The seasonally adjusted annual rate of car sales in the United States rose to about 14.1 million in June. If sales stay around that level, Sirius could add even more subscribers,” said Crockett. “If car sales stay above a 14 million seasonally adjusted annual rate and self-pay churn is closer to the low-end of guidance, we believe SiriusXM subscriber adds could be close to 2 million for the year.”

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