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SiriusXM in talks to resume Howard Stern contract amid pandemic

Satellite tv for pc broadcaster SiriusXM mentioned it’s in talks to retain Howard Stern — its largest star — because the enterprise weathers the fallout from the coronavirus.

SiriusXM Chief Government Jim Meyer mentioned Thursday on a second-quarter earnings name that the corporate has reengaged with the provocative radio and TV character about re-upping his contract, following a lull attributable to the pandemic.

Stern’s five-year contact lapses on the finish of 2020, resulting in buzz about whether or not the shock jock will retire, re-up with Sirius, or ponder shifting his present to a rival like Spotify, whose podcasting unit has been on a shopping for spree.

“Howard may be very pleased with what he’s doing. It issues when Howard is completely satisfied,” Meyer mentioned. “His present is healthier, and he’s extra relaxed. I’ve been clear: I would like Howard Stern to work at SiriusXM for so long as Howard Stern desires to work.”

The CEO mentioned he was optimistic about holding Stern with the satellite tv for pc radio firm, including: “I do know what Howard desires. And we’re making an attempt to determine a approach to make all these issues work collectively. I don’t need to be overly optimistic right here, however I would like Howard right here… We’ll maintain working and we’ll get there, I hope. On the finish of the day, it’ll come all the way down to what Howard desires to do.”

Within the occasion that Stern steps away from his stay exhibits, SiriusXM will retain the rights to his library for seven years and can maintain airing them. “That’s not what I would like. I would like Howard on air,” Meyer insisted.

Turning to his firm’s outcomes, Meyer mentioned the enterprise is bettering after a tricky slog introduced on by the pandemic, which has decreased new automobile gross sales, thus reducing Sirius’ attain.

“Paid promotional subscribers decreased because of declines in shipments from automakers providing paid trial subscriptions with the acquisition or lease of a automobile,” the corporate mentioned.

Throughout the three months ended June 30, the corporate, managed by John Malone’s Liberty Media, mentioned it added 264,000 self-pay subscribers at SiriusXM however misplaced 768,000 promotional subscribers.

Sirius ended the quarter with 30.three million self-pay and 34.three million whole customers, down 516,000.

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