Sirus XM Radio Is Going To Buy Pandora Media for $3.5B

With every acquisition is an opportunity to learn something new.

In my eyes, this marks the beginning of an era for music streaming platforms.

The way in which Sirius’ product is delivered is drastically different from all of the other major audio entertainment companies. Sirius had its roots grown on the back-end of the radio industry and now that radio is a dying out form of entertainment, it is looking towards the future. I have not read any articles about this purchase but I can bet you that instead of Sirius starting from scratch and creating their own streaming platform, it was much cheaper to acquire a company who is already excelling in this area. Sirius is almost like the grandfather of this industry but never really went anywhere with music streaming. They did more with original content. I can remember when Pandora became popular and how ground breaking it was and Sirius was in the shadows. I feel like back in the day, everyone would have Sirius in their cars and then when they came into work, they used Pandora. Each service had its own benefits but they were both the same; the two are online radio. It’s interesting to me to see two online versions of an entertainment medium consolidate with no new product. Then I realized that Pandora now has a newly developed streaming service which may be what that new product is.

Just think about the differences between these two, Spotify, and Apple Music. Spotify and Apple Music gives you the ability to take the songs you already know and like and create a playlist devoted to them. The same goes for Spotify. Correct me if I’m wrong, but Pandora and Sirius are both radio based which means you are constantly hearing new music or music related to your taste. The general consensus for streaming music platforms is that I already know what music I like and I want to hear that, but develop algorithms for me so I can find music similar to my predefined taste. Sirius and Pandora really aren’t doing a good job capturing this crowd. In their product, I can’t see how prioritizing what music I already want to hear first is their main goal. It seems like they are capitalizing in the online radio space where I select a channel and fine tune it to my likes and dislikes. There is definitely more than one way to do something right. Perhaps this acquisition is a simple analogy that there is more than meets the eye in this emerging industry. All that you and I can do is wait and see how this plays out over the next year or two. Maybe we will see this duo use their deep roots to create a force to be reckoned with. Maybe these two will ride the coat-tails of the deteriorating radio industry? Who knows? Only one thing is for sure, there is money to be made.


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