This Week in Sirius XM Radio Inc (SIRI): Pandora Media Inc (P)

Jumping through hoops
Sirius XM is making an interesting March Madness wager, activating dormant receivers from March 19 to March 24 for access to every game during those first six days of the NCAA men’s basketball championship.

Hoops fans know that March Madness continues well beyond March 24, so the hope here is that basketball fans that aren’t subscribers will pay up to continue receiving the service through the Final Four in early April. Since a little more than half of the 50 million cars out there with satellite receivers are inactive, this move that opens up the service to a large audience with little effort on its end.

Sure, one can argue that terrestrial radio also offers thorough March Madness coverage. But you still can’t blame Sirius XM Radio Inc (NASDAQ:SIRI) for tyring.

Premium streaming
Pandora Media Inc (NYSE:P) has found it a challenge to get its 67.7 million active listeners to pay up for the leading music streaming service, but Spotify isn’t having a problem getting people to crack open their pocketbooks. Spotify revealed this week that 6 million of its 24 million users are now premium accounts, paying $4.99 a month for ad-free PC streaming or $9.99 a month for access across mobile and all other devices.

Pandora must be jealous, while Sirius XM Radio Inc (NASDAQ:SIRI) should be encouraged by the appetite for premium streaming. Pandora did post strong quarterly results earlier this month, but just 13% of its revenue is coming from subscriptions.

In the meantime, Pandora Media Inc (NYSE:P)’s CEO stepped down earlier this month, and a name that keeps coming up for a possible replacement is none other than former Sirius XM chief Mel Karmazin. That would be an interesting choice, though it’s hard to fathom that Pandora Media Inc (NYSE:P) would be able to afford him.

The article This Week in Sirius XM Radio originally appeared on

Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz and The Motley Fool have no position in any of the stocks mentioned.

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