Satellite Radio Blog

Friday, May 22, 2009

Recession killed the radio star

The radio business has been struggling lately, to say the least. Traditional, terrestrial radio hasn't found a way to successfully box out competition from Sirius XM Satellite Radio (NASDAQ: SIRI), internet streaming radio, iPods, and other sources.

old valves radio

Plus fewer people are in their cars driving to work lately, so the ratings numbers are down. Not to mention the monotonous nature of much of today's music (or maybe I'm just old . . . get off my lawn, you Jonas Brothers, you!) It's no surprise, then, that the radio advertising business recently saw its worst quarter in history.

The Radio Advertising Bureau said yesterday that combined national and local ad spending dropped 26% to $2.8 billion during the last quarter. Network radio dropped 13% to $238 million while off-air revenue receded 12% to $264 million. The one silver lining was digital platforms (online, streaming, and HD Radio), which collectively saw revenue jump 13% to $101 million. Bottom-lining the numbers to reflect all segments of the traditional radio business, revenue dropped 24% to $3.4 billion during the latest reporting period.

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