Karmazin expects dramatic jumps in ad revenue.

Sirius Satellite CEO Mel Karmazin chided analysts this morning (Aug. 2) for underestimating the advertising growth his company will achieve in 2006, as he dubbed the growth "humongous." The comments came during a question asked about possibly using Arbitron data for advertising sales.

Karmazin said he doesn't need audience data from Arbitron because "we think their methodology is archaic in this world and our salespeople have sufficient data," based on internal research, to convince advertisers to buy.

"If, in fact, we believed that we needed numbers from Arbitron we would subscribe. We are looking at a humongous growth in advertising revenue anticipated for 2006 and we are able to accomplish that with our numbers."

He did hold out the possibility of using Arbitron data in the future, however, saying "at the time that our advertisers need syndicated numbers, they will get those."

Karmazin said he expects to achieve "retail parity" with competitor XM Satellite by year's end "and the ad revenues for 2006 will be dramatically up over 2005, and that's a function of Howard Stern and we will have a far bigger subscriber base. I know many of you were skeptical of advertising on the Internet, and you'll see the advertising on Sirius [will be] greater than you think it is."

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