updated 4/27/2005 11:52:39 AM ET 2005-04-27T15:52:39

XM Satellite Radio Holdings Inc. reported a smaller loss for the first quarter of the year Wednesday while its revenues more than doubled.

XM, the larger of the two players in the emerging field of satellite radio broadcasting, also said it was still on track to reach 5.5 million subscribers by the end of the year.

The Washington, D.C.-based company posted a net loss of $119.9 million, or 58 cents per share, down from $170.1 million, or 96 cents per share, in the same period a year ago.

Revenues more than doubled to $102.6 million from $43 million last year, driven by significant subscriber growth.

Analysts surveyed by Thomson Financial were looking for the company to post a loss of 70 cents per share on sales of $101.2 million in the latest period.

XM’s shares rose 75 cents or 2.7 percent to $28.35 in pre-market trading on the New York Stock Exchange.

XM recorded net subscriber additions of 541,140 for the first quarter, compared with the 321,675 subscribers added in the first quarter 2004, and finished the quarter with 3.77 million subscribers.

Sirius Satellite Radio Inc., XM’s only competitor, most recently reported a subscriber count of 1.2 million as of January.

XM said subscriber growth in the first quarter was particularly strong in the retail aftermarket, meaning not those units pre-installed in cars, accounting for almost 60 percent of total net subscriber additions.

These aftermarket results were driven by heavy demand for Roady2, SKYFi2 and the new MyFi portable, wearable radio available in Best Buy, Wal-Mart, Circuit City as well as regional and independent retailers.

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