NEW YORK: US broadcaster Sirius Satellite Radio is paying an $83 million (€63.8m; £42.8m) stock-based bonus to its star shock jock Howard Stern for his cuss-ridden work in raising subscriber numbers to 6.3m last year.

Stern joined Sirius a year ago courtesy of a $500m compensation package. Ceo Mel Karmazin says his signing has "dramatically paid off", despite a distinct lack of company profits and a slide in the share price.

Speculation is mounting that Sirius could merge with rival XM Satellite Radio, which has also increased its subscribers numbers in spectacular fashion but resolutely failed to make money.

Data sourced from Financial Times online; additional content by WARC staff