Department Of Justice Approves Sirius-XM Merger
[Satellite Today – 3-24-08] The U.S. Department of Justice approved the merger of XM Satellite Radio Holdings Inc. and Sirius Satellite Radio Inc., March 24.
The merger is “not likely to harm consumers,” the Justice Department said in a statement. “The evidence did not show that the merger would enable the parties to profitably increase prices to satellite radio customers for several reasons, including: a lack of competition between the parties in important segments even without the merger; the competitive alternative services available to consumers; technological change that is expected to make those alternatives increasingly attractive over time; and efficiencies likely to flow from the transaction that could benefit consumers.”
The merger was proposed in February 2007, but consumer groups and the terrestrial radio industry have lobbied against it, saying it would form a monopoly. The Justice Department said in its announcement that the two satellite radio companies not only compete against each other but with traditional AM/FM radio, HD Radio, MP3 players and audio offerings delivered through wireless telephones.
Sirius and XM stockholders approved the deal in November, but the U.S. Federal Communications Commission must approve the merger before it can be completed.