Sirius XM

Sirius XM Radio Inc (NASDAQ:SIRI) announced on Wednesday that it has appointed James E. Meyer as its interim Chief Executive Officer. This is effective immediately.

Meyer, who has been Sirius XM’s President of Sales and Operations since 2004, will succeed Mel Karmazin, who announced in October that he would not renew his present employment agreement. Meyer will also become a member of the company’s Board of Directors, according to a corporate release.

Prior to his tenure at Sirius XM Radio Inc (NASDAQ:SIRI), Meyer had been president at the management consulting firm, Aegis Ventures; he had provided consulting advice to Sirius.

In a statement today by Eddy Hartenstein, Chairman of the Board of Directors of SiriusXM, he said of Meyer, “We are fortunate to have a very strong executive team in place at SiriusXM and in Jim we have a highly qualified leader and operator. Jim has been an integral part of Sirius XM for eight years and his extensive knowledge of SiriusXM’s business and significant industry experience are a great asset.  Given Jim’s current position, we expect this will be a seamless transition.  Thanks to Mel Karmazin’s leadership, strategic vision and operating focus, Sirius XM Radio Inc (NASDAQ:SIRI) is poised for a continuation of the results and performance investors have come to expect.”

Karmazin, who also also resigned from Sirius’ board in October, had said he will leave on Feb. 1.

To find a permanent successor, the SiriusXM Board has put together a search committee. It is chaired by Greg Maffei and includes James Mooney and Hartenstein. They will review both internal and external candidates (Meyer is on the list) for Sirius’ next Chief Executive Officer.

Meyer said of the news via the release, “I’m honored to lead Sirius XM Radio Inc (NASDAQ:SIRI) during this important time for our Company. Sirius XM is a great business and I look forward to working with our talented management team to continue to deliver the best content and service to our subscribers, while enhancing value to our shareholders.”

As for Karmazin, his exit came up concerns that Sirius’ biggest shareholder, Liberty Media Corp. (NASDAQ:LINTA), would eventually get rid of him as the two battled over controlling the company.

With Karmazin out of the picture, Liberty will continue its pursuit of Sirius.

This comes as Sirius XM Radio Inc (NASDAQ:SIRI) saw its third-quarter earnings drop thanks to a loss that got rid of its debt but hid its higher revenue and subscriber growth.

On Wednesday, shares are up 0.68 percent, $2.98. Year-to-date, the stock is up 63.4 percent.