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Sirius XM Radio Second-Quarter Adjusted Earnings Rise

Jim Meyer CEO Sirius XM 2013 P
Sirius XM Radio CEO Jim Meyer

UPDATED: The satellite radio company, controlled by John Malone's Liberty Media, also posted record quarterly revenue and said it continues to discuss a new carriage deal with Fox News.

Sirius XM Radio on Thursday reported improved underlying second-quarter financials, including company records for certain metrics.

Sirius, led by CEO Jim Meyer, had previously announced that it had added 715,000 subscribers in the second quarter to end June with more than 25 million subscribers. That led it to raise its full-year subscriber growth guidance to 1.5 million from 1.4 million.

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Asked during an earnings conference call about the state of discussions with 21st Century Fox's Fox News surrounding an extension of its current carriage deal -- which makes the news network's content available to subscribers of the satellite radio firm -- Meyer said it is "a valuable part of our content we want our listeners to have."

The current deal runs through the end of August, and he hopes to continue the relationship for the long term, but financial terms have to make sense, he said. "I'm hopeful over the next three to four weeks together we'll figure out" a new deal, he said. "We'll see what happens."

Asked if Fox News could go dark on Sirius XM similar to TV networks going dark on pay TV operators amid carriage disputes, Meyer said that was possible but unlikely.

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The satellite radio firm, controlled by John Malone's Liberty Media, said its quarterly earnings of $126 million compared with $3.1 billion in the year-ago period, when a $3 billion one-time tax benefit boosted results. Adjusted for that special item, earnings before income taxes rose 47 percent to $202 million though.

Revenue rose 12 percent to $940 million to set a quarterly record for the company.

"Sirius XM's second-quarter results reflect record performance on almost every vital metric: the 25 million subscriber milestone, record revenue, adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) and adjusted EBITDA margin," said Meyer. "We grew our revenue at double-digit rates for the sixth consecutive quarter while being very mindful of our costs as we invest in advanced IP and telematics platforms designed to provide more services to our subscribers and automakers."

Sirius on Thursday reiterated its full-year revenue target of more than $3.7 billion and raised its adjusted EBITDA projection to approximately $1.14 billion.

E-mail: Georg.Szalai@THR.com
Twitter: @georgszalai