Inmarsat cuts maritime outlook as growth slows

British satellite operator Inmarsat abandoned its forecast for growth in its maritime business on Thursday, as customers moving to its next-generation terminals hit revenue, but said its spectrum-sharing deal in North America would keep full-year profit on track.

The group, which provides voice and data services to ships, aircraft and remote locations, reported a 32 per cent rise in core earnings to $222.7 million in the second quarter on 24 per cent higher revenue of $359 million, helped by the deal with LightSquared.

Chairman and Chief Executive Andrew Sukawaty said: “While we believe that a return to more normalised revenue growth in our MSS business is only a matter of time, we expect near-term factors will constrain growth for longer than previously anticipated.”

The company said it now expected Inmarsat Global MSS revenue to be broadly flat year on year, but added that the revised outlook would not prevent it from meeting current market expectations for profit before tax for 2011.

Revenue in its maritime unit was $181.3 million, down form $181.7 million in the same period a year ago.

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