XM, Sirius to merge in Canada

by Liam Britten

Following the lead of their American counterparts, the duality of satellite radio companies in Canada will merge into one, representatives from XM and Sirius told the CBC.

From the CBC:

In the United States, Sirius and XM merged late last year to form Sirius XM, which holds 47 per cent of Canadian Satellite Radio Holdings.

Sirius Canada, the biggest satellite radio operator in Canada, is 40 per cent owned by CBC Radio, 40 per cent by Slaight Communications and 20 per cent by Sirius XM in the United States.

"The benefits of a merger are clear, and together we'll be better able to create more growth and opportunity for shareholders, accelerate technological innovation and ensure that satellite radio is able to compete in the rapidly evolving audio entertainment industry," said Mark Redmond, CEO of Sirius Canada.

"This combination is the next logical step in the evolution of satellite radio in Canada."

The transaction is subject to regulatory approval by the CRTC.

The fact that these companies have had to merge doesn’t bode well for satellite radio in Canada. To be forced into merging for mutual preservation, and to generate a total audience of only 1.7 million is rather underwhelming — and for anyone who’s looking to buy satellite radio for “commercial-free music” will be disappointed to hear that there are ads on satellite radio now. I can see why people in rural areas would want this service, since there are so few radio options outside of the cities, but for anyone in urban areas, it’s becoming less and less worth it. Which is too bad, because there is some excellent programming on these channels.

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Liam Britten

Liam Britten

Liam Britten is a writer and editor with a journalism background operating out of Vancouver. In addition to his work at Techvibes, he has been published in student publications across Canada, as well as local newspapers such as The MapleRidge-Pitt Meadows TIMES and The Langley Advance. An aficionado for the finer things in life — such as video games and sports — Liam is plugged into the tech... more

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