(CelebrityAccess MediaWire) — Sirius Satellite Radio reported strong first quarter subscriber growth and financial and operating results, driven by continued demand for its programming. As of March 31, 2005, Sirius had 1,448,695 subscribers, attributing the better-than-expected subscriber growth to robust retail sales and rapidly expanding sales in its automotive distribution channel. Sirius reported revenue of $43.2 million for the first quarter of 2005, a 365% increase over the $9.3 million for the year-ago quarter, driven by a 312% increase over the company's subscriber base of 351,663 at the end of first quarter 2004.
The company is again raising its 2005 year-end subscriber estimate and now expects to have over 2.7 million subscribers at year-end, up from previous guidance of over 2.5 million, due to strong subscriber growth trends and continued robust demand for its service.
"Coming off a strong finish last year, we continued to see increased demand for Sirius during the first quarter," said Mel Karmazin, CEO of Sirius. "Not only did we beat Wall Street consensus for subscriber and revenue growth, but we also registered our lowest churn ever, which clearly indicates a preference for our superior programming, as well as very high levels of customer satisfaction. Our strong results in the automotive channel are increasingly contributing to our subscriber growth, and we expect this momentum to build even further as more factory programs begin this year. Plus, with the addition of Martha Stewart Living Radio later this year, the arrival of Howard Stern next January and NASCAR in 2007, we believe demand for our service will continue to increase as we approach the launch of this exclusive content." –Bob Grossweiner and Jane Cohen