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EIB lends €300 million to finance SES’s new satellites program

SES 03b mPOWER launch. Credit: SES

Ibadan, 12 January 2023. – The European Investment Bank (EIB) and SES have announced a €300 million financing agreement details in favor of SES. The seven-year term loan will back investments related to the design, procurement, and launch of three previously announced satellites that will deliver advanced broadcast and broadband services spanning Western Europe, Africa, and the Middle East. The loan is the largest amount the EIB has ever provided to a Luxembourg-based company.

The supported projects include procuring three satellites from Thales Alenia Space to deliver video broadcasting and network services. Operating from SES’s prime TV neighborhood of 19.2 degrees East (ASTRA 1P, ASTRA 1Q) and 57 degrees East (SES-26) will enable SES to strengthen its world-class satellite broadcast over Europe and Africa. Furthermore, it will allow SES to support dynamic connectivity needs for companies and governments from the heart of Europe across Africa and the Middle East.

Two of the three satellites are next-generation, flexible, and fully software-defined satellites that will enable service reconfiguration and instant in-orbit adjustment to SES customers’ demands. When launched in 2024, all three satellites will receive operation commands from SES’s headquarters in Luxembourg.

EIB Vice-President Kris Peeters, speaking on the loan, said, “space technology, data, and services have become indispensable in the lives of Europeans. I am, therefore, very enthusiastic about this agreement with SES, which directly supports the EU space policy. It is a big step in successfully launching a new generation of satellites able to deliver advanced broadcast and broadband services for the benefit of both the private and public sectors in Western Europe and beyond.”

Likewise, Sandeep Jalan, Chief Financial Officer of SES, said: “This diversifies SES’s sources of financing on attractive financial terms. The agreement enables us to deliver on our commitment to broadcast high-quality content from our prime TV neighborhood serving 118 million TV households across France, Germany, and Western Europe. These next-generation satellites are also able to support the most ambitious plans for companies and governments across Europe and beyond, enabling them to enter the new era of networked connectivity services.”

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