Howard Stern Signs with SIRIUS
“King of All Media” Howard Stern and SIRIUS announced today an epic agreement whereby Stern will move to SIRIUS beginning January 1, 2006. SIRIUS is the premium satellite radio provider known for delivering the very best in commercial-free music and sports programming to cars and homes across the country. The world-renowned Stern is credited with revolutionizing the talk radio format. He is the No. 1 national radio host among males 18-49 years of age and ranks No. 1 in many of the 46 major markets where his show is broadcast, including New York and Los Angeles. “It has been my dream to have the top-rated show in radio since I was five years old,” said Stern. “SIRIUS — the future of radio — will take this dream to a whole new level as I bring my fans my show my way. It will be the best radio they will ever hear.”
Known for his extremely loyal fan base and for his unequalled ability to migrate fans to other media, Stern has embarked on numerous highly successful ventures over the years while maintaining dominant ratings in his demographic. Stern has written two best-selling books — Private Parts, which was Simon & Schuster’s fastest-selling book ever, and Miss America, the fastest-selling book in publishing history. He later starred in the highly successful motion picture adaptation of Private Parts, orchestrated the fastest-selling soundtrack in motion picture history and starred in the most watched entertainment pay-per-view special of all time. “The Howard Stern Show” is E! Entertainment Television’s most successful show.
“Signing Howard Stern is, without a doubt, the most exciting and transformational event in the history of radio,” said Joseph P. Clayton, CEO of SIRIUS. “He is an entertainment force of unprecedented recognition and popularity in the broadcast world, who is capable of changing the face of satellite radio and generating huge numbers of subscribers for SIRIUS.”
I expect this to do as much for SIRIUS as signing Herschel Walker did for the USFL. I suppose some Stern listeners would be willing to subscribe to this service to be able to continue listening, but it’s hard to see how it has much impact beyond that. It’s conceivable that we’ll one day have a radio equivalent to cable television, where niche channels create unique content that’s widely shared. But there is more than enough programming out there on commercial radio that could be syndicated into a satellite service that it’s unclear to me why anyone would bother.