Dueling Fools: The Sirius-XM Merger

XM Satellite Radio (Nasdaq: XMSR  ) and Sirius Satellite Radio (Nasdaq: SIRI  ) were baking under the hot congressional lights yesterday. Like a young couple trying to sway their parents toward approving their union, the satellite-radio stars have come before the nation's lawmakers defending their right to merge.

A lot is riding on this. You can't just run away and elope in the corporate space.

Sirius CEO Mel Karmazin argued the obvious: The consumer would be better off with broader programming choices, and the resulting company won't be a monopoly given the new technologies springing up just about everywhere.

He may have a point. Companies such as Napster (Nasdaq: NAPS  ) and Audible (Nasdaq: ADBL  ) are aggressively marketing their audio subscription services. Any radio station can stream online or broker a deal for wireless handset broadcasting. Companies such as SanDisk (Nasdaq: SNDK  ) and Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT  ) will sell you portable players that allow you to create your own audio programming.

I still don't think the deal will pass. So when Tim Beyers let me know that he thinks the deal will ultimately clear the regulatory hurdles, I smelled a duel.

Where do you stand? That's what this duel is all about.

Duel on!

Microsoft is a Motley Fool Inside Value selection. XM is a former Rule Breakers pick.

Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz does not own shares of companies mentioned here. The Fool has a disclosure policy.


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