by Dennis “Cos” Costa
On Tuesday, November 30th, Sirius XM Radio (NASDAQ: SIRI) and the National Football League (NFL) announced that an agreement to extend their Satellite Broadcast and Marketing Agreement had been reached. The NFL and Sirius have agreed to a five-year extension that will carry through the 2016 Super Bowl.
Sirius XM has been the satellite radio partner of the NFL since 2004 and will now continue to broadcast every NFL game live, nationwide, from preseason action through the Super Bowl for five additional seasons, beginning after the conclusion of this season’s Super Bowl in January 2011.
The extension includes every NFL game, plus SIRIUS NFL Radio, the only 24/7 radio channel dedicated to the NFL. The big addition to this agreement is that SIRIUS and XM will be streaming every NFL game on-line for their subscribers, bringing another option for customers to listen to their favorite teams.
“We are pleased to continue our partnership with Sirius XM. They have been an excellent partner and have become part of NFL fans’ daily lives, not only on game day, but throughout the year”
Steve Bornstein, NFL Executive Vice President of Media
The streaming on-line coverage will begin with the 2011 season. NFL Radio can be heard on channel 124, and features exclusive daily talk shows hosted by NFL experts, interviews with players, coaches and executives from around the league. In addition, in-depth coverage of the NFL draft, training camps, and NFL Network programming is provided. The deal also provides Sirius XM to rights to use the NFL “shield” logo and collective NFL team trademarks.
“The NFL is a terrific partner and we’re very pleased to continue to work with them to provide both Sirius and XM listeners the kind of top-notch NFL programming that their fans have come to expect. The NFL has been and will continue to be one of the major tent poles of Sirius XM’s Lineup. Sirius and XM will give fans around the country a fully portable and comprehensive way to follow their favorite team and everything happening around the league.”
Scott Greenstein, President and Chief Content Officer
This announcement comes on the heels of Sirius XM Radio announcing that they have reached a major milestone of over 20 million subscribers. In a press release the company reported that they would be celebrating this record making event, as previously announced, with a special subscriber-only broadcast of an exclusive Paul McCartney concert at the Apollo Theater in New York City on December 13th 2010.
“Reaching and surpassing 20 million subscribers is a significant milestone for us. We have added the last 10 million subscribers faster than the first 10 million –despite a tremendously competitive environment — representing a strong endorsement of our service and our programming by discerning consumers who want and demand the best in audio entertainment. As a leader in audio entertainment, Sirius XM has assembled the best content, personalities, and entertainers that satisfy our subscribers’ diverse interests.”
Mel Karmazin, CEO of Sirius XM
With this announcement, the company is filling in the missing pieces of its programming contract renewal process. The NFL is an important piece of that unique content puzzle. Howard Stern is still in negotiations with the company, with his five year contract coming to end later in December of this year. There has been much anticipation by investors and fans alike regarding Stern’s pending decision, and what that contract might entail. Most believe that Howard Stern’s re-signing is a done deal, but confirmation by either the company or Stern has yet to be made.
Position: Long SIRI
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Disclosure: Position Long Sirius