From SATELLITE 2009-
This morning’s news that the French government’s export credit agency, Goface, has awarded Globalstar with $547 million to acquire and launch satellites is not sitting well with executives here.
Industry analyst Tim Farrar got the Globalstar issue rolling at this morning’s operator CEO panel by asking the panel to comment on the deal.
Intelsat CEO Dave McGlade: “Government sponsored financing of commercial companies will distort the market, especially in Europe. It’s bad for competition and is unfair to the companies that receive no funding.”
Telesat CEO Dan Goldberg seconds the motion.
This sort of reaction is expected as some executives were looking forward to less competition if Globalstar went under.
But, there is a certain part of the news story leaving some with a bad taste in their mouth – the money goes to a U.S.-based company to save French jobs at Thales Alenia Space, which is manufacturing the next-generation Globalstar satellites. The funds will be provided by a syndicate that includes major French banks and are intended to pay for at least 24 of the four dozen satellites Globalstar previously ordered from Thales, according to Globalstar.
So, with U.S. Congress becoming a sort of Colosseum for bailouts, will we see Le Special House Panel for Globalstar?