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Liberty Media ends bid for rest of Sirius

– Liberty Media is dropping its bid to buy the rest of the satellite radio provider Sirius.

The move disclosed late Thursday comes as Liberty Media Corp., controlled by billionaire John Malone, takes steps to create two tracking stock groups for its business. One will be called Liberty Media Group and the other Liberty Broadband Group.

Liberty Media said that because of the tracking stock distribution, it is withdrawing its offer for the rest of New York-based Sirius XM Holdings Inc.

Liberty Media owns 53 percent of Sirius stock.

In January, Liberty announced a complex proposal that would have allowed it to obtain full ownership of Sirius. The deal would have valued Sirius at nearly $23 billion.

Liberty Media President and CEO Greg Maffei said in a statement that the company may hold further discussions with Sirius, depending on market conditions.

Sirius XM has built the world’s largest pay-radio service, with 25.6 million subscribers as of late last year.

The creation of the tracking stocks still needs approval from Liberty Media shareholders. But Liberty expects it to be in place by the third quarter.

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