Sirius XM raises guidance after strong Q3


The satellite radio business grew in Q3, with Sirius XM reporting that revenues increased 15% to $722.5 million. Business is so good that the company has increased its full year 2010 guidance.

Rather than the previous expectation that full year earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) will hit $575 million, the company is now telling Wall Street to expect $600 million. Adjusted revenue is expected to exceed $2.8 billion.

Sirius XM is, however, sticking with its subscriber count guidance from October. It is expecting to end 2010 with approximately 20.1 million subscribers. The company had already reported that it added 334,727 net subscribers in Q3. That took the count to 19,862,175.

Where is the revenue growth coming from? Sirius XM said the growth in Q3 subscription revenue – up 6% to $612.1 million – was attributable to multiple factors: more subscribers; an increase in the sale of “Best of” programming; and decreased discounts for multi-subscription and Internet packages. On the advertising side, the company attributed growth to more effective sales efforts and improvements in the national market for advertising. Advertising is still a small part of the Sirius XM business, but it grew 29% from a year earlier in Q3 to just under $16 million.