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August 1, 2013

Eutelsat scales up in Latin America with acquisition of SATMEX

Eutelsat Communications will position group as major satellite operator in Latin America.

By Duncan Macrae

France-based Eutelsat Commications has today announced that it will acquire 100% of Satélites Mexicanos (SATMEX) for an enterprise value of US $1,142 million.

Alongside the recently ordered EUTELSAT 65 West A satellite, this move will place Eutelsat in a major position for satellite operation over Latin America, reflecting its strategy to expand in high growth markets.

Michel de Rosen, Eutelsat CEO, said: "The acquisition of Satmex, together with the order announced yesterday of our satellite for 65° West will make Eutelsat a key operator in vibrant digital markets across Latin America.

"With Satmex’s strategic orbital slots, state of the art fleet and upcoming satellites, Eutelsat is gaining a robust platform from which to access the significant opportunities in this region. Via these two strategic steps, we are significantly upscaling our presence in Latin America to complement our footprint in fast-growing markets, and securing future sources of growth and value creation."

Eutelsat will acquire 100% of the share capital of Satmex for $831 million.

The market for satellite services in Latin America is already comparable in volume terms to Western Europe. According to satellite industry analyst Euroconsult, Latin America is one of the fastest growing satellite markets, with above 7% forecast average annual growth in demand over the 2011-2016 period. Moreover, pricing dynamics in the region are healthy thanks to high fill rates.

Patricio Northland, CEO of Satmex, added: "This is a very positive outcome for the shareholders and other stakeholders of Satmex, and I am delighted at the prospect of Satmex joining the Eutelsat Group. Our fleet will provide Eutelsat with a unique strategic opportunity to enter the fast-growing Latin American market and obtain premier orbital locations across the continent.

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"Our clients will benefit from the integration of our network into Eutelsat’s world-class satellite fleet and operations. This transaction would not have been possible without the dedication and leadership of Satmex’s management team, as well as its world-class employees."

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