He thinks the news will be positive since the case has dragged on this long – over a year since the merger was announced. He said if authorities were going to nix it, they would have done so by now. And it’ll be soon because FCC Chairman Kevin Martin has said he wants it done before the end of Q1 2008. March 31 marks the end of the quarter.
Martin also has said that the merger faces a high hurdle.
Meanwhile, seekingalpha.com notes that HD radio purveyor iBquity is still trying to attach a condition to the merger under which satellite radio receivers would have to be able to receive both analog and high-def radio as well. It is unclear at this point which industry would pay for modifications to receivers making them capable of picking up all three forms of wireless audio.
In yet another development, New York State Broadcasters Association President Joe Reilly was trying to enlist some cavalry support to stop the merger in the form of the New York State Attorney General’s office, relying on the reputation that outfit has in handling antitrust matters. Reilly noted that in addition to numerous unfair competition concerns, the merged satellite entity (he called in a monopoly, actually) was offering board seats to auto corporations, putting AM/FM access to car dashboards at risk