Advanced Television

Eutelsat tops 6,000 channels

February 17, 2016

By Chris Forrester

Paris-based satellite operator Eutelsat says it has reached a total of 6,000 channels on its fleet of satellites. Eutelsat is now carrying more than 2,200 free-to-air channels, on 50 pay-TV platforms.

Eutelsat says it continues to register strong channel growth in fast growing markets, notably in the Middle East and Africa, with one out of three channels on its satellites targeting these fast-growing regions. In Sub-Saharan Africa, half of the 1,136 satellite channels broadcast today are transmitted by Eutelsat. The share of Eutelsat channels in the total satellite offer in the Middle East and North Africa is even higher, with two out of three channels choosing Eutelsat, notably the 7/8° West neighbourhood where 80 channels were added in October 2015 on the new EUTELSAT 8 West B satellite.

The news emerged as part of Eutelsat’s half-year results (to December 31st) where it reported H1 revenues of €774 million (up 1.5 per cent), and a robust EBITDA margin of 77.5 per cent, and an all-important contractual backlog worth €5.8 billion.

Michel de Rosen, the outgoing CEO of Eutelsat, said: “Eutelsat’s First Half results were in line with expectations. In the Second half [that is the Jan-June period 2016], the ramp up of recently launched satellites for fast growing markets, notably EUTELSAT 8 West B for the Middle East and North Africa region, EUTELSAT 115 West B for the Americas and EUTELSAT 36C for Russia and Sub-Saharan Africa, should enable us to achieve our Full Year objectives.”

“Important steps were taken during the First Half to expand the scope of our growth drivers, particularly in the market for broadband services. First, the order of an all-electric High Throughput Satellite that will scale up our broadband efforts in Africa following the lease of capacity on AMOS-6 satellite. Second, the announcement this month of a joint venture with ViaSat to leverage our respective resources in the European satellite broadband market will support the commercial performance of KA-SAT.”

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