Number of Sirius XM subscribers in the U.S. 2011-2022
Sirius and Pandora: a brief historyBefore Sirius XM purchased Pandora Radio, the two were competitors for years. However, Pandora began to struggle to compete with other highly successful music services such as Spotify as consumer preferences evolved and other larger companies like iHeartMedia began to infiltrate the market.
Pandora’s plight is aptly illustrated not only by its income data (or rather, data on its losses), but also by its comparatively small slice of the global subscriber base who don’t just use streaming services, but pay for them. Despite millions of users, Pandora fans simply weren’t spending their money on the service. In November 2018, the number of Pandora’s worldwide paying subscribers was estimated to amount to just under 6.2 million, whereas Spotify had 96 million subscribers globally at the end of 2018.
Back in 2017, Sirius invested 480 million U.S. dollars in Pandora for stakes of almost 20 percent in the company. This gave Pandora less control but the cash injection it desperately needed, and predictions of a full-blown acquisition began to circulate. When the inevitable finally did come to fruition, the move cost Sirius XM 3.5 billion U.S. dollars.