Paris, 16 November 2020 – Eutelsat Communications (Euronext Paris: ETL) announces the successful entry into service of its new-generation EUTELSAT KONNECT High Throughput Satellite at the 7° East orbital position.

Launched aboard an Ariane rocket on 16 January 2020, the availability of EUTELSAT KONNECT had been delayed due to Covid-related interruptions in the roll-out of the ground segment, but having now completed its testing, this much anticipated spacecraft is now operational and will gradually ramp up with 80% of the capacity in service by year-end and 100% by March 2021.

EUTELSAT KONNECT is an all-electric satellite, built by Thales Alenia Space and the first to use Thales Alenia Space’s new Spacebus Neo platform. With 75 Gbps of capacity across a network of 65 spot-beams, it delivers significant resources for broadband services and sets a new benchmark for flexibility in High Throughput Satellites leading to optimized fill rates. EUTELSAT KONNECT also comes with compelling economics, with a cost per sellable Gbps substantially lower than for existing in-orbit assets.

Coverage will initially be split between Europe with circa 55% of the capacity focused on high-demand areas namely France, Italy, Germany, Spain, the UK, and Africa where it will considerably supplement and gradually replace the capacity leased from a third-party operator.

The availability of EUTELSAT KONNECT marks a major step in Eutelsat’s Connectivity strategy, contributing to making 2021 a turning point in Fixed Broadband. The entire French capacity on the satellite has already been contracted on a wholesale basis by Orange. Moreover, Eutelsat’s recent acquisition of BigBlu Broadband adds a retail pillar to its distribution network which will accelerate the ramp-up of the satellite and prepare the ground for entry into service of KONNECT VHTS in the course of the fiscal year 2022-23.

Source: Eutelsat

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