Satellite company ends momentous year with another milestone
Paris, December 28, 2001
Eutelsat, one of the world’s leading satellite operators, has celebrated the end of a momentous year by clocking up over 1,000 television channels on its satellites. From its pioneering beginnings in 1983 when channels such as Sky Channel were the first clients to sign up for its capacity, Eutelsat has become the satellite operator of choice for the delivery of consumer entertainment for broadcasters such as BBC, Canal +, TPS, RAI, Eurosport, Bloomberg and CNN.
Eutelsat’s recent penetration survey revealed that of the 122 million TV homes in Europe, North Africa and the Middle East equipped for cable and satellite reception, 98 million are watching programmes delivered by its HOT BIRD™ and EUROBIRD™ satellites.
On a total of more than 1000 TV channels delivered through Eutelsat’s capacity on 21 satellites, over 970 are digital. With ATLANTIC BIRD™ 2, the new satellite launched in October 2001, Eutelsat is now delivering specially pre-packaged broadcast digital television programming for cable networks.
Continuing demand from broadcasters and multimedia service providers will be satisfied in 2002 by the launch of new broadcasting satellites, specifically HOT BIRD™ 6 and 7, that will also improve the in-orbit sparing capability at 13 degrees East and expand the capacity dedicated to coverage of Africa and available for the opening of new markets.
In addition to its Ku-band missions, HOT BIRD™ 6 will also enable new services through its enhanced Skyplex capability and its Ka-band transponder capacity.
Commented Giuliano Berretta, Eutelsat CEO: “Satellites and digital technology have fundamentally changed the media landscape by opening up possibilities for thematic, regional and interactive programming, thereby dramatically enhancing consumer choice. New levels of compression, combined with our upcoming new television satellites will open a new chapter in broadcasting that will further empower consumers.”
Eutelsat S.A. is one of the world’s leading providers of satellite communications solutions. With its fleet of 18 satellites and additional capacity on three other satellites Eutelsat provides seamless coverage across four continents, encompassing Europe, the Middle East, Africa, south-west Asia and North and South America. Six satellites are under construction with launches planned over the next two years. Eutelsat’s satellite infrastructure gives it the flexibility to combine TV and radio services, rapid Internet access, multimedia entertainment, corporate network solutions and IP and non-IP business applications. From its strategic HOT BIRD™ orbital position and other orbital positions, Eutelsat transmits 1019 television and 550 radio stations to 98 million households via cable or direct-to-home with 41% of capacity dedicated to IP and non-IP network applications. Company turnover for 2000 was €686 million. With headquarters in Paris, Eutelsat’s workforce comprises 380 people from 23 countries. Major shareholders are: France Télécom, British Telecom, Lehman Brothers Merchant Bank, Deutsche Telekom, Telecom Italia.
For further information please contact:
Kelly Grant or Magdalen Bush, Key Communications, telephone: 020 7580 0222
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