Intelsat can do no wrong… maybe

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Intelsat enjoyed another impressive day on the NASDAQ stock market on May 31st.

Intelsat saw its share price jump a phenomenal 17.2 percent by midday, which means it has improved some 33 per cent since May 1st, and one cynic commentator praised the satellite operators hiring of Juan Pablo Cofino as its new VP for the Latin American region having been “responsible” for adding a truly spectacular $323 million to the company’s market capitalisation in a single day’s trading. If true – which it isn’t – then that appointment would be worth one magnificent bonus at year end.

The truth is more mundane, and that investors are buying into the company because of the prospects of lottery winning benefits flowing from a re-distribution of some of Intelsat’s C-band assets over the US. They would be used to help roll out 5G transmissions for wireless businesses.

The jump was prompted by help from trade body CTIA (Cellular Telecommunications Industry Association) which urged the FCC to move forward and approve the proposed C-band allocation and to set an aggressive timeline in order to clear hundreds of megahertz from satellite to terrestrial cellular.

The day saw Intelsat’s stock hit $19.10 at one point, although settling back at around $17.85 by the end of trading.

Two months ago (April 2nd) Intelsat’s share price was a more typical $3.68.

Investors also saw a similar jump at SES, which would also benefit from the C-band readjustment – and assuming the FCC gives the scheme its approval – rising from around €14.30 to €14.78.


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