Time to Sell Apple, Google, Other 'Tech' Stalwarts?
Because Mel cannot find companies he would like to acquire, he says there's really nothing else to do with the cash other than return it to shareholders. No, Mel, there is something else. Plenty of "something else." You just cannot effectively vision what that might be.
Liberty Media(LMCA) Chairman John Malone seems to share Thiel's view.
Despite being 71 years of age, Malone tol The Wall Street Journal he takes a more long-term, innovative and progressive view than Karmazin does:
So I tend to be looking out 10 or 20 years, whereas I think Mel in all honesty right now has got a pretty short-term focus . . .
From our side, we would probably put a little more money into technology
andbe a little more concerned about the future . . .
. . . we would probably be pushing and talking a lot more about the next generation or two of service, including how do we enhance our Internet delivery of Sirius, as well as the next generation in the auto.
. . . You can't lock up music in a meaningful way but you can lock up this other stuff. And you can also innovate stuff and create stuff.
That's not your grandfather's Chairman. The guy runs circles around Karmazin.
He also proves that the criticism he makes of Sirius XM and Karmazin does not exist in a vacuum. It's difficult to argue when virtually the same sentiment that comes from Thiel comes from Malone (not to mention Pendola!).
Of course, Sirius XM does not run in the same league as Google. You have to ask yourself, Does Sirius XM even consider itself a tech (or new media) company?
It's pretty clear that they do not. And, if they do, Karmazin defines what it means to be a tech company much differently than people in tech (or new media, which, in my world, has become interchangeable with tech).
At day's end, if Sirius XM thinks it can survive the rapidly evolving future of new media by not looking and acting like a tech company, well . . . Malone better take profits in his stake immediately.