Liberty Media Corporation, a key stakeholder in Major League Baseball (MLB) team Atlanta Braves and Formula One has experienced ‘an outstanding third quarter’.
Publishing its Q3 results, the group reported strong trading across its three primary metrics – Formula One, the Atlanta Braves and the SiriusXM broadcasting company – having secured major media rights deals in Asia until 2022 and in France via Canal+ until 2024, whilst the three-day US Grand Prix was the ‘largest race in F1 history’ with a total attendance of 400,000.
Repurchases of one million shares at an average price of $45.02 per share for a total consideration of $47 million between 1 August and 31 October enabled Liberty to effectively leverage Formula One’s successful year – with the Grand Prix occurring in mid-October – whilst the firm anticipates a positive year in 2022 as the racing series plans for a 23-race schedule from 20 March to 20 November 2022.
Meanwhile, Liberty Media has also maintained confidence in its ownership of the Atlanta Braves, with the team having just won its fourth MLB World Series title against the Houston Astros and recording the second highest attendance in the league at 2.3 million throughout the season.
“Across the board, our companies had an outstanding third quarter,” said Greg Maffei, Liberty Media President and CEO. “The Atlanta Braves convincingly claimed their first World Series title since 1995. Congratulations to the team, Braves management and all of Braves Country.”
The group’s most significant success, however, came from the SiriusXM platform, which experienced an increase in revenue across the third quarter by 9% to $2.20 billion, whilst adjusted EBITDA also rose by 9% to $719 million.
Liberty Media now owns 80.2% of shares in SiriusXM, having secured 42.7 million shares in a free-exchange on 3 November. The company maintains confidence in its stake in the broadcasting unit, due to the firm’s subscriber base growing by over 616,000 users during Q3 to total 1.1 million over the entire year.
“SiriusXM posted record self-pay subscriber growth and increased guidance across all metrics,” Maffei continued. “Our ownership in SiriusXM now exceeds 80%, and all future distributions from SiriusXM will be tax-free. Formula 1 set a record with US Grand Prix attendance over 400,000 for the weekend and is enjoying a suspenseful championship.
“It’s amazing how much progress has been made over the past year given the challenging environment, and I am truly grateful for the hard work and dedication of all these team members to produce such impressive results.”