SiriusXM CFO Talks Future of Howard Stern

The satellite radio giant also reports better-than-expected subscriber growth in 2014

Will Howard Stern extend his contract with satellite radio giant SiriusXM Radio beyond the end of the year? Sirius CFO David Frear addressed the topic at an investor conference on Wednesday.

“We have been clear for a long time that we think he is just an incredible performer,” he said at the Citi 2015 Global Internet, Media & Telecommunications Conference in Las Vegas. “He puts on a great radio show. There is nobody like him. There is never going to be anybody like him again. And so, as long as he wants to continue his show, we would love to have his show.”

He added that, of course, both sides would have to agree on a business deal. The CFO hedged his bets on Stern’s future by promoting his show. “Howard has a long history of addressing his contract towards the end of the contract,” Frear said. “He talked about it on the show a couple of days ago. So, quite honestly, the best way to know what’s going on … is by listening to the show.”

Read more Sirius XM CFO on Howard Stern's Future, Why Company Won't Launch Abroad

Frear later in his appearance was asked about Stern again, saying that “losing Howard from Sirius [would be] more than a tier question. The big question, as Howard’s contract comes up and he decides what to do with the next three to five years, is going to be what does he want to do with the library of content as well. Does he want to stop performing? Does he want the library to continue to perform?”

Concluded Frear: “It is my great hope that Howard continues to put on the extraordinary show that he does.”

Earlier in the day, Sirius said that it ended 2014 with 27.3 million subscribers, reporting 1.75 million net subscriber additions in the year, exceeding the company’s increased guidance of 1.5 million. The company also said it would exceed its 2014 guidance for revenue and a couple of other financial metrics.

Sirius predicts it will add 1.2 million subscribers in 2015.

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“SiriusXM performed very well in 2014, exceeding our 2014 subscriber and financial guidance, even after pushing most of these targets higher during the year. With more people than ever subscribing to satellite radio, we expect the company’s strong performance to continue in 2015,” said Sirius CEO Jim Meyer. “Our exclusive, diverse and expertly curated content continues to have widespread appeal. SiriusXM’s automotive distribution is growing by millions of units per year, and we expect to continue our exceptional track record of growth while simultaneously investing in innovative new services for the connected vehicle.”

Email: Georg.Szalai@THR.com
Twitter: @georgszalai

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