Eutelsat-SES Joint Venture Approved By EC
A joint venture created by SES Global and Eutelsat’s targeting the mobile TV market was approved by the European Commission (EC) July 25.
The two rivals announced in October they were teaming up to jointly invest in what they called “the first European satellite infrastructure for broadcasting video, radio and data to mobile devices and vehicle receivers.”
Having looked at the plans, the EC ruled that the joint venture was good news for European customers. “With respect to the provision of satellite-based infrastructure for broadcasting content to mobile devices, such as mobile telephones, customers would continue to have a sufficient choice of alternative infrastructures based on a variety of technical transmission standards,” the EC said in a statement.
In an interview after the joint venture was unveiled, SES Global CEO Romain Bausch told Satellite News that once regulatory approval was granted, “the [joint venture] will start to commercialize the payload and have a structural approach to potential customers. I see the first contracts being signed at some point in 2007. In terms of revenues, our plan is to have the satellite in orbit no later than early 2009, and revenues are expected to flow from that point.”
Mobile TV is seen as a strong growth area, as customers have been showing an insatiable appetite for content on the move. Yet the role of satellites in the market remains unclear. There already exist a number of different standards including digital multimedia broadcasting (DMB), digital video broadcasting–handheld (DVB-H) and Digital Audio Broadcasting–Internet Protocol (DAB-IP).