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Sirius Approaches Pandora’s Board With Takeover Interest

December 05, 2016 | | Comments 0
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Board hasn’t responded to new engagement from Greg Maffei

Sirius XM‘s Chairman Greg Maffei recently approached Pandora Media Inc.’s board to express renewed interest in a takeover of the Internet radio provider, according to people familiar with the matter, following up on its offer from earlier this year.

Pandora shares rose on Friday after a CNBC report that the company is willing to engage with Sirius. They closed 16% higher at $13.33, valuing the company at about $3.1 billion. Sirius fell 5.6% to $4.30, giving it a market value of $20.8 billion.

Pandora hasn’t decided if it will restart talks with Sirius.

Though Pandora dominates the online radio market it pioneered, the company’s growth has slowed in recent years, at the same time as on-demand services Spotify Ltd. and Apple Music have added millions of users.

Pandora advisers have begun soliciting interest from buyers

Co-founder Tim Westergren, who returned as Pandora’s chief executive officer in March, is trying to almost quadruple sales to $4 billion by 2020 by going into new businesses, such as ticket sales and concert promotion, while converting free users into paying customers.

The company made three acquisitions last year to diversify beyond online radio, including ticket seller Ticketfly, and is about to introduce a new on-demand service similar to Spotify.

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