SES highlighted its “improving trajectory” of Video revenues for the six months to June 30th which were 3.9 per cent down y-o-y at €526 million. SES’s argument is that last year, its lost revenue position for H1 trading was at -8 per cent down.
Its Networks division’s underlying revenue of €349 million was flat compared with H1 2020 (-0.2 per cent at constant FX) with strong ongoing growth in Government (+11.3 per cent) offsetting Covid-related impacts on Mobility (-10.7 per cent) and near-term declines in Fixed Data (-3.9 per cent). Q2 2021 underlying revenue of €176 million was consistent with the prior period (-0.5 per cent y-o-y at constant FX) and 1.1 per cent higher than Q1 2021.
The contract backlog at June 30th 2021 was €5.3 billion (gross backlog of €5.9 billion including backlog with contractual break clauses).
SES seemed to celebrate its €0.40 per share dividend payment despite last week’s significant rise at Eutelsat to an overall €0.93 per share. It informed investors that it had bought in an overall €94 million of its own shares for cancellation since the beginning of this year.
SES is delivering more than 8,650 TV channels to 361 million homes. 3,120 are in HD (up 8 per cent).
CEO Steve Collar said: “The lasting value of our Video business is reflected in the improved trajectory, the important long-term renewals at our core neighbourhoods, increased penetration of HD TV channels, and new paying subscribers for HD+ in Germany. Excitingly, in H2 2021, we will be expanding and enhancing our HD+ portfolio with the extension onto mobile devices and IP-enabled non-satellite homes.”
“Networks continues to perform well notwithstanding the Covid-impacted environment, notably in Government, reflecting the strong demand for our unique multi-orbit resilient solutions. With O3b mPOWER still over a year away from commercial launch, we have secured over $300 million in backlog from major cruise brands which underscores the compelling combination of high throughput and high flexibility of the constellation,” he added.
Collar updated the market on the C-band process which he said remains fully on track. “The recent issuing of C-band licences by the FCC is a notable milestone towards initiation of the reimbursement process. Meanwhile, we have returned €275 million of cash to shareholders this year underscoring our commitment to delivering sustained and attractive returns for our shareholders.”