Liberty Media goes after Pandora.

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Liberty Media goes after Pandora.

Postby kal » Fri Jul 22, 2016 8:20 am

Both names in that headline are little known in Canada.

Liberty Media holds the controlling stake in SiriusXM and a one-third stake in Live Nation Entertainment (the big ticketing business). Liberty's CEO is Greg Maffei, onetime Microsoft CFO, who left the Seattle company to found 360 Networks, a company based for a while in Gastown. 360 specialized in buying up so-called dark-fibre but the company eventually foundered.

Pandora of course is the long-running and biggest of the music streamers. However it pays far greater royalties for music (and was hit with a $90 million penalty recently) than do the other streamers. Pandora was accessible in Canada for a number of years until geo-blocking was invoked. However, unlike Netflix, Pandora's geo-blocking is relatively mild and is easily circumvented with free services such as Tunnel Bear.

Why would Liberty want Pandora? After all, SiriusXM is now a solid business model, both on a subscriber basis and on the basis of deals with car manufacturers.

Well, as cars become Internet hotspots and as data use fees drop there is the strong likelihood that satellite radio subscribers will turn their backs on $15/month fees in favour of cheap or free services such as Pandora (which operates much like a radio station, at least in terms of advertising).

As they say in radio, stay tuned.
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Re: Liberty Media goes after Pandora.

Postby kal » Wed Jul 27, 2016 7:27 am

BTW, SiriusXM stock just hit an all-time high, on the strength of strong subscriber numbers.
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Re: Liberty Media goes after Pandora.

Postby jon » Wed Jul 27, 2016 7:54 am

kal wrote:BTW, SiriusXM stock just hit an all-time high, on the strength of strong subscriber numbers.

The U.S. stock, yes, that is true. As for the Canadian stock, it is under a very black cloud of a privatization initiative. TD sums it up in their headline in their last report (July 15th) on the company: "Nothing to see here". As in the stock price is stuck for the foreseeable future.

Too bad since they are still paying a nice little 7.5% dividend.
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Re: Liberty Media goes after Pandora.

Postby kal » Sun Jul 31, 2016 12:28 pm

Observations on satellite radio.

Today I had cause to go into downtown Vancouver. I noticed that after entering Vancouver at 1st Ave. and then subsequently travelling throughout the downtown core that not once did I have a satellite signal dropout. Impressive. Clearly there is at least one terrestrial repeater at work in Vancouver.

Upon heading back my first signal dropout occurred along the Mary Hill Bypass where trees block the satellite signal.
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