Howard Stern

Editor in chief of Dealerscope

In a development seen as an affirmation of the long-term viability of satellite radio, popular radio host Howard Stern has signed a deal to remain with Sirius XM Radio for five more years.

It’s a familiar enough scenario. Two industry giants who have been at each other’s throats for the last few years decide to shake hands and play nice. The goal: to join and form one large corporation. The challenge: Convincing everyone else you’re not out to destroy them, while simultaneously asking the FCC to forgive the concessions you made, namely to never merge in the first place. If XM and Sirius, the nation’s only two satellite radio companies, have their way they would operate as one entity, combining only financial assets and programming. On either side of this debate are folks who stand to lose

Dealerscope: How has your overall mobile electronics business been over the past year—are you up, down, or about on par with the same period in 2005? Mike Cofield: It’s good—up about five percent. Business has met our expectations. Mehdi Narimanian: We’re up, thanks to bigger-ticket items. There’s lots of negative news out there on mobile electronics in general. But our navigation, video and satellite radio business has helped other categories. Dan Jeancola: We’re up over the year before, but within the business itself, the industry is in transition. Between categories it’s shifting pretty dramatically. Core car sources in the industry are depressed, but

Consumers increasingly are turning to portable consumer electronics products to keep them entertained while they are on the go, according to factory-to-dealer sales figures reported by the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA). Strong sales of portable products, such as MP3 players, satellite radios and digital cameras, are expected to continue during the holiday shopping season as more consumers hit the road, rail and sky. MP3 players continue to be one of the most popular consumer electronics purchases this year. In year-to-date sales through September, dollar sales have topped $411 million, which is an increase of 81 percent over the same period in 2003. CEA Market

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