Posted by : Matthew Wild | On : March 26, 2008

March 24, 2008. The Antitrust Division cleared the merger between XM Satellite Holdings and Sirius Satellite Radio — the only satellite radio providers. In its closing statement, the Antitrust Division concluded that it would be unlikely that the parties could raise prices post-merger. The Antitrust Division noted that the parties do not compete for current customers because the costs of equipment makes switching to the other provider impractical. The Antitrust Division concluded that relevant market for new customers would have to include alternative sources for audio entertainment in addition to satellite radio. The Antitrust Division further noted that future technology would only increase the competition faced by the parties. With respect to competition for sole source contracts with major auto manufacturers, those contracts are locked-in and there is unlikely to be any competition for those contracts for many years. Finally, the Antitrust Division noted that the transaction would result in substantial efficiencies (and cost savings) which further supported its conclusion that the transaction would not harm competition.