Qwest's choice of Joe Euteneuer as its chief financial officer makes sense for the company given its new hire's years of experience as a Comcast executive. But it really makes sense for Euteneuer, who's spent the past six years handling the financial end of things at XM Radio, a satellite service that once seemed like a sure bet. However, it's turned out to be anything but.
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Neither XM nor Sirius, its primary competitor, were able to turn major profits in the satellite-radio biz, which hasn't grown nearly as quickly as many observers anticipated early on -- so, with the Federal Communications Commision's acquiescence, the two firms merged this past summer. Unfortunately, all has not gone smoothly since then. As noted in a recent Forbes piece, the combined Sirius XM Radio firm's revenue forecasts fell below analysts' expectations, causing its stock price to fall 14 percent last week. And with what's happening on Wall Street these days, don't expect a reversal of fortune anytime soon.
Of course, Qwest isn't exactly going great guns right now, either. But for Euteneuer, the company probably looks like a sea of tranquility compared to where he's just spent half a decade plus. -- Michael Roberts