SiriusXM is in talks to acquire Pandora, according to reports from CNBC and the New York Post. Given that SiriusXM’s parent company Liberty Media and Pandora have been in off and on discussions for over a year at this point, the talks aren’t surprising in the least. But it doesn’t mean a sale is imminent.
Last year, Liberty Media reportedly made a $3.4 billion bid to purchase Pandora, which was declined by the board of the streaming service, due to a disagreement on the valuation of Pandora. This time around, the two companies once again haven’t been able to agree on the value of the deal, according to both reports.
If a deal eventually gets done, there are questions as to what SiriusXM can offer Pandora besides a bit more cash. SiriusXM likely needs an on-demand streaming service as much as Pandora needs deeper pockets — as products like Android Auto and Apple CarPlay become more prevalent, more users will move away from traditional and satellite radio (SiriusXM) and rely on the apps on their phones (and thusly in their infotainment systems) like Apple Music, ESPN, and Pandora for their music and morning radio shows.
Given the constant chatting these two companies have kept up since last year, a deal is still possible, but if SiriusXM is looking to acquire Pandora at a reduced cost like its parent company tried to do last year, this may not be resolved anytime soon. Pandora’s CEO Tim Westergren nor its board seems to be in a discounting mood.
Pandora declined to comment.