Welcome to “double POMO” Monday. Today, the Fed will inject a double shot of “cortisone” into the blown out knee of the economy, in the hopes that the holiday season will bring investors and consumers a false sense of optimism, and get them to blindly open their wallets again. Today also marks the return to normal trading, following the Thanksgiving holiday week. Today’s action could shed some light on which direction Sirius XM (SIRI) is headed in the near term.
There are some suggestive new job openings at Sirius XM worth getting a bit excited over. The first is a part-time position for test engineer to “assist in developing software feature test plan for new SiriusXM retail and OEM products“. This simple statement suggests that the new software for SATRAD 2.0 is ready to go, and that Sirius XM is now nearing the testing phase to remove any bugs before it goes to market. What follows, is even more enticing and supports my previous idea that SATRAD 2.0 will feature MP3 purchase opportunities.
The minimum qualifications list spells it out pretty clearly:
- Undergraduate with major in electrical engineering, computer science, or computer engineering is desired.
- A background and interest in the use of cell phone applications including Android and/or Apple based systems, music applications, and mp3 software tools is desired.
- Software test experience is desired.
Sirius XM CEO Mel Karmazin had reported that the company could introduce parts of SATRAD 2.0 online nearly immediately, and has targeted a launch of aftermarket products in Q4 2011. The very fact that such a long time frame was given, along with this position of a software testing plan, suggests that the online introduction of MP3 purchase capabilities will be introduced much sooner than the 12 month time frame suggested.
If this software is introduced early enough in 2011, it can have dramatic effects to 2011 revenue and earnings. Even Apple’s (NASDAQ: AAPL) extensive iTunes library is no match for the ever expanding library at Sirius XM’s disposal, which includes live concerts and in-studio performances, featuring music and other choices that are not available anywhere else. This particular feature has the potential of setting Sirius XM apart from any and all current online radio offerings, and was probably made possible by the $2.00 royalty pass-through charge that eleven or so people, took issue with.
The second notable notable, is a listing for a Senior Manager, Marketing – Automotive Remarketing Division.
The Senior Manager, Marketing in the Automotive Remarketing Division will join a newly formed teamfocused on working with new and existing partners to market Sirius and XM to owners of previously owned vehicles with inactive satellite radios. Responsible for implementing various marketing programs across the Remarketing category, including direct to consumer, and through automotive dealers and other 3rd party marketing partners.He/she will report to the SVP and General Manager, Automotive Remarketing Division.
The idea of a newly formed team suggests that Sirius XM is finally looking for real results, from the remarketing opportunities we have been discussing for years. Hint to new team: If this is new to you, we have our own team in the form of Sirius XM investors who have debated the possibilities for years. Just ask. The words 3rd party marketing are also of interest, in that it is the first time we have seen any suggestion that the company will seek new opportunities outside of OEM Certified Preowned Programs, such as opportunities with used car dealers and insurance companies for private party transactions.
A good first step was recently made in updating the company’s website to include used car listings and while they were at it (and completely another subject altogether), the same page was updated to allow users in trial periods to subscribe online. The link is predominately displayed on Sirius.com and users can reach the page with a single mouse click. OK….so little more than “and used” was added to the text, but it’s a start and a step in the right direction.
Disclosure: Author is long SIRI