CRTC Opens Door To More Radio Choices For Canadians
OTTAWA and NEW YORK – July 08, 2004 – Partners CBC/Radio-Canada, Standard Radio Inc. and Sirius Satellite Radio Inc. (NASDAQ: SIRI) welcome today’s CRTC announcement regarding the launch of public consultations on satellite radio services in Canada leading to a public hearing in November 2004. The partners have filed an application proposing a new Canadian-controlled company that will offer Canadian subscribers approximately 100 digital audio channels, including over 60 commercial-free music channels and a diverse array of some of the world’s best information, sports and other entertainment programming. Among them will be Canadian channels from CBC/Radio-Canada and Standard Radio.
If licensed by the CRTC, the new subscription-based service will immediately be available to Canadians across the entire country, from urban centers to the most remote regions. The four CBC/Radio-Canada services also will be added to the Sirius line-up in the U.S., providing established and emerging Canadian recording artists and performers with access to a North American audience.
“This represents a unique opportunity to extend the reach of CBC/Radio-Canada services and package them with the best of the world for distribution on this emerging digital audio platform,” said Robert Rabinovitch, CBC/Radio-Canada’s President and CEO. “Satellite radio will expand the choices available to Canadians, wherever they live, increase the exposure of Canadian performers to U.S. audiences and open the door for new innovative services. As Canada’s national public broadcaster, CBC/Radio-Canada must be present on this new and significant delivery platform.”
The CBC/Radio-Canada offering will include two new music channels (one English, one French) featuring a mix of new Canadian music and emerging artists, live concerts, studio sessions, stories and sounds from across Canada. CBC Radio One and Radio-Canada’s la Première Chaîne will also bring distinctly Canadian voices and journalistic perspectives to Sirius’ diverse information and entertainment line-up, which already includes BBC World, National Public Radio and Public Radio International.
“As this country’s largest privately-owned broadcaster, we are very excited about being able to reach Canadians in their cars, homes, cottages, boats and virtually anywhere else they choose to set up their satellite receivers,” said Gary Slaight, President and CEO of Standard Radio Inc. "Over the years, Standard has had an unmatched track record in supporting Canadian musical talent, including both new and established artists, with our radio stations across Canada. As part of our venture with CBC/Radio-Canada and Sirius Satellite Radio, we will ensure that the new platform will provide access for Canadian recording artists not only to a wider Canadian listenership but to the much larger North American audience. We must seize this opportunity now."
If licensed, the partners’ agreement would ensure that Canadian performers, writers and creators gain broader exposure to audiences across Canada and the U.S. Canadian artists and performers also stand to benefit financially from additional copyright fees and from the investment of five percent of gross revenues in Canadian talent development.
“In partnering with CBC/Radio-Canada and Standard Radio, we are joining forces with two national broadcasters who share our commitment to top quality programming and who have a strong commitment to the development of new and emerging talent," said Joseph P. Clayton, President and CEO of SIRIUS. “ Satellite radio has rapidly emerged as a significant new delivery platform that has met strong consumer acceptance. Sirius expects that it will reach close to 1 million subscribers in the U.S. by the end on 2004. A Canadian-owned and controlled satellite radio service will offer Canadians, no matter where they live in the country, unparalleled music selection, insights and perspectives, as well as an unmatched lineup of sports, news, talk and entertainment. We are proud to be associated with this venture that paves the way for an orderly introduction of satellite radio in Canada. ”
A backgrounder on satellite radio is available at: http://www.cbc.radio-canada.ca/htmen/pdf_rtf/satelliteradio.pdf
CBC/Radio-Canada is Canada's national public broadcaster and one of its largest cultural institutions. The Corporation reaches Canadians through eight national radio and television networks, full-service Web sites, local/regional stations and affiliates, the digital television channel Country Canada, and the continuous music network Galaxie. CBC/Radio-Canada has also forged partnerships with other broadcasters and is a partner in the specialty television services ARTV and The Documentary Channel. Through this array of activities, the Corporation brings diverse regional and cultural perspectives into the daily lives of Canadians in English, French and eight aboriginal languages.
About Standard Radio
Standard Radio is owned and operated by Standard Broadcasting, Canada’s largest privately owned multi-media company with revenue exceeding $500M (CAD). Standard Radio consists of 51 radio stations and reaches 6.5 million Canadians every week. It also includes two TV stations; IMS, a national sales division; Sound Source, Canada’s largest syndicator of radio programming; and several Internet services, including Icebergradio, Canada’s largest online radio portal.
SIRIUS, now available to over 10 million DISH Network satellite TV and SIRIUS Satellite Radio subscribers, provides listeners with over 120 channels of the best commercial-free music, sports, information and entertainment, with digital quality sound coast-to-coast, broadcast daily from New York City, Los Angeles, Nashville, New Orleans, Houston and Daytona. SIRIUS offers 65 channels of 100% commercial-free music, featuring multiple categories of pop, rock, country, hip-hop, R&B, dance, jazz, classical and Latin music, along with more than 50 channels of world-class sports, news, talk entertainment, traffic and weather for a monthly subscription fee of only $12.95, with greater savings for upfront payments of multiple months or a year or more. SIRIUS also broadcasts live play-by-play games of the NHL and the NFL, and is the official satellite radio partner of the NFL.
SIRIUS Satellite Radio products for the car, truck, home, RV and boat are manufactured by Alpine, Audiovox, Blaupunkt, Clarion, Eclipse, Jensen, JVC, Kenwood, Panasonic and U.S. Electronics, and can be purchased at major retailers including Best Buy, Car Toys, Circuit City, Good Guys, Wal-Mart, Sears, Tweeter and Ultimate Electronics, along with RadioShack and DISH Network outlets.
SIRIUS’ exclusive automotive partners DaimlerChrysler, Ford and BMW represent over 40% of new cars and light trucks sold annually in the United States. Automotive brands currently offering SIRIUS radios in select new car models include BMW, MINI, Chrysler, Dodge, Jeepâ, Nissan, Infiniti, Mazda, Audi, Ford, Lincoln-Mercury, Mercedes-Benz and Volkswagen. Automotive brands that have announced plans to offer SIRIUS radios in select models include Jaguar, Volvo, Land Rover and Aston Martin. In 2004, SIRIUS radios are expected to be available in over 80 different car models, with more than 50 of them factory programs. Also, Hertz currently offers SIRIUS in 29 vehicle models at 53 major locations around the country. In addition, the Penske companies – Penske Auto Group, United Auto Group and Penske Trucking – are offering SIRIUS radios as a factory installed option, where available, in their cars and trucks through their dealerships.
Genmar Holdings, the world’s largest manufacturer of recreational boats, Formula Boats and Winnebago, the leading supplier of recreational vehicles and motor homes, also offer SIRIUS.
Click on sirius.com to listen to SIRIUS live, or to find a SIRIUS retailer or car dealer in your area.
Any statements that express, or involve discussions as to, expectations, beliefs, plans, objectives, assumptions, future events or performance with respect to SIRIUS Satellite Radio Inc. are not historical facts and may be forward-looking and, accordingly, such statements involve estimates, assumptions and uncertainties which could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed in any forward-looking statements. Accordingly, any such statements are qualified in their entirety by reference to the factors discussed in our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2003 filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Among the key factors that have a direct bearing on our results of operations are: our dependence upon third parties to manufacture, distribute, market and sell SIRIUS radios and components for those radios; the unproven market for our service; our competitive position and any events which affect the useful life of our satellites.