FCC throws target date on Sirius-XM


WASHINGTON -- FCC chairman Kevin Martin said Tuesday that he planned by year's end to have the commission wrap its review of Sirius' attempted buyout of XM.

Martin told reporters that the agency's 180-day merger "shot clock" would run out about that time.

"That's the target," Martin said.

If approved, the combined value of the company would be about $13 billion, which includes net debt of about $1.6 billion. The combined company would have about 14 million subscribers.

The deal has generated thousands of filings at the commission as proponents and opponents of the deal have attempted to influence the decision. The FCC and the Justice Department must approve the deal.

While the Justice Department looks at whether the deal will be anti-competitive, the FCC has to decide if it's in the public interest.

Broadcasters have mounted a take-no-prisoners campaign against the deal, arguing that allowing the nation's two satellite radio companies to become one entity will put terrestrial radio at an unfair advantage.