Sirius XM nearing 20 million subscribers


Net subscriptions to satellite radio were up in Q3 and sent the subscription tally for Sirius XM to a record high for the second straight quarter. The company has again revised upward its subscriber target for all of 2010.

Sirius XM reported that it added 334,727 net subscribers in Q3 2010, up from 102,295 in Q3 2011. The gains were greater for the Sirius side of the merged company than for the XM side.

Through three quarters of 2010 Sirius XM has added 1,089,417 net subscribers. The company had previously advised that its expected net additions for the full year to total 1.1 million, so that has now been upped to 1.3 million. That would put total subscriptions over 20 million at about 20.1 million. The company ended Q3 with a record high 19,862,175 subscribers.

RBR-TVBR observation: The recovery of the auto sector is not only aiding radio and TV stations on the advertising side, it is also benefiting Sirius XM, which is heavily dependent on OEM receiver sales. The company reported that the conversion rate for trial subscriptions included with auto sales to self-pay subscribers improved to 48.1% in Q3 from 46.2% a year earlier, so all of the numbers are moving in the right direction. Churn of self-pay subscribers also reduced to 1.9% from 2% a year earlier, no doubt due to the improving economy.