Google is reporting that the XM Satellite and Sirius merger is now complete. Welcome in the all new Sirius XM Radio.
NEW YORK (AP) — XM Satellite Radio and Sirius Satellite Radio say they have completed their merger. The new company plans to change its name to Sirius XM Radio Inc. The combined company’s stock will continue to be traded on the Nasdaq under the ticker symbol SIRI. The company says it now has more than 18.5 million subscribers. It expects cost savings from the deal of about $400 million in 2009.
This has been a long time coming. The original merger was approved last Friday by the FCC but this deal has been in the making for more than a year. The companies first applied for permission to combine in March 2007. The Justice Department approved the deal in March of this year without conditions, saying the companies don’t really compete because customers must buy equipment that is exclusive to either XM or Sirius, and subscribers rarely switch providers.
Those who are worried about the merge and the usability of their current equipment, don’t. We are told that subscribers will not have to buy new radios to receive a mix of programming from both services, according to the companies. But if they want to pursue a special pay-per-channel a la carte option, they will need new sets. Sirius and XM also have promised to include a limited “a la carte” offering that would be available within three months of the close of the deal and allow listeners to pay only for the channels they want to receive.