Advanced Television

US C-Band “on track”

March 5, 2019

By Chris Forrester

Eutelsat has held a series of ‘road show’ presentations to US-based analysts, and an investment bank report says that while no new financial information emerged, Eutelsat’s management say that they expect the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to make a “favourable” decision regarding the reallocation of some C-band frequencies over the US.

Eutelsat itself would only be a modest beneficiary of any such decision because it only supplies around 5 per cent of C-band spectrum over the US. The two main beneficiaries are Intelsat and SES, which between them provide around 90 percent of C-band spectrum.

The report, from Exane/BNPP, says that Eutelsat’s management remain prudent on the net economic benefits that could flow to satellite operators. “The level of FCC oversight, tax, leakage to cable operators and the telco appetite for C-band spectrum appear as the main drivers of net benefit,” says the bank’s report.

The bank says it remains ‘Outperform’ on Eutelsat’s share prospects. “The expected return to top-line growth in H219 and FY20, tax savings, and C-band are all attractive catalysts in the near term in our view.”

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