The day is finally here. The Federal Communications Commission reached an agreement to conditionally approve the merger between Sirius Satellite Radio Inc. and XM Satellite Radio Holdings Inc., according to various reports.
The three Republicans on the five-member Commission have agreed in principle to vote in favor of letting the deal proceed as long as the companies agree to conditions to protect consumers and settle the FCC enforcement matters, Reuters reports.
"I think it's fair to say an agreement in principle has been reached," FCC Chairman Kevin Martin told the Wall Street Journal earlier today.
Martin explained to WSJ that XM received a higher fine because it kept its terrestrial repeaters in operation after being informed by the FCC that they were in violation. Sirius received a smaller fine because it had shut down its towers while waiting for FCC approval.
"That's a significant violation under our rules," said Martin. "Hopefully this is the last issue for us to move forward."
"I'm optimistic and hopeful that we will be able to move forward very quickly," Martin told Reuters.
Tate is expected to vote on the deal as soon as today. The FCC isn't expected to formally release its decision for a few days, as staff attorneys draft the final paperwork for review by the five commissioners.