SiriusXM announced Monday that it has agreed to purchase Pandora for $3.5 billion.
The blockbuster purchase of the streaming music giant boosts SiriusXM's audience to approximately 106 million listeners, comprised of 36 million satellite radio listeners and 70 million Pandora users, according to The Verge.
No immediate changes to either service are expected as SiriusXM and Pandora will continue to operate as separate brands.
To insiders, the company merger has been long coming since SiriusXM invested in a 19 percent stake in Pandora last year, according to Recode's Peter Kafka.
What does it mean for users?
Kafka says the "obvious play is to use Pandora’s digital reach to both market Sirius’s existing service and to eventually migrate some Sirius customers there."
The move should also help Pandora stay in the fight against competitor streaming services like Spotify, Apple Music, Google and Amazon.
"The addition of Pandora diversifies Sirius XM's revenue streams with the U.S.'s largest ad-supported audio offering, broadens our technical capabilities, and represents an exciting next step in our efforts to expand our reach out of the car even further," said SiriusXM CEO Jim Meyer in a release.
That last part is key as Pandora's digital presence will likely help generate listenership beyond the automobile for SiriusXM, assuming they eventually make their satellite radio programming available on Pandora.
It's also a power move in satellite radio's competition with traditional radio, which continues to struggle. Earlier this year iHeartMedia filed bankruptcy, and it's future is clearly centered on the digital world and the iHeartRadio app.
According to Motley Fool, anyone who thought satellite radio was simply bridging the gap between traditional radio's eventual move to digital/online couldn't have been more wrong: "Satellite-radio consumption continues to grow as its fan base of well-heeled drivers relish the seamless access to premium audio entertainment to score their daily commutes."
Motley Fool notes that while growth is slowing it is still trending up for S