SES ASTRA Expands In Central And Eastern Europe And Enters The Bulgarian Market
New Direct-to-Home platform on SES ASTRA’s fast growing 23.5 degrees East orbital position
Sofia/Luxembourg - SES ASTRA, an SES company (Euronext Paris and Luxembourg Stock Exchange: SESG), announced today a further expansion into central and eastern Europe, and its entry into a new growth market, Bulgaria. The Bulgarian Direct-to-Home (DTH) operator Satellite BG will use three transponders at SES ASTRA’s 23.5 degrees East orbital position for broadcasting its channel portfolio to TV homes across Bulgaria.
Satellite BG will launch its channel bouquet on 1 February 2011. The offer will consist of more than 70 channels including High Definition (HD) channels and all major public and commercial channels in Bulgaria. TV viewers wishing to receive Satellite BG will need a satellite dish pointed to 23.5 degrees East and a satellite receiver with a suitable smartcard and subscription.
23.5 degrees East is SES ASTRA’s fast-growing orbital position for central and eastern Europe and the Benelux countries. In addition, CS Link and Skylink are using 23.5 degrees East for Direct-to-Home satellite services in the Czech and Slovak Republics. Other customers on 23.5 degrees East include Canal Digitaal and TV Vlaanderen in the Benelux and pan-European operators Viacom, Turner, Discovery and Bloomberg. With a dedicated Duo-LNB, TV viewers can receive from SES ASTRA’s 23.5 and 19.2 degrees East orbital positions and benefit from the free-to-air channel offer from Europe’s prime orbital position 19.2 degrees East.
Norbert Hölzle, Chief Commercial Officer of SES ASTRA, said: “This agreement is our entry into the Bulgarian market. Satellite BG is an important new customer who will help us to open up the Bulgarian market for our products and services. This agreement demonstrates that ASTRA’s 23.5 degrees East orbital position is one of the most attractive hot spots for the whole region, enabling us to further extend our reach and develop our offer.”
Stefan Bonev, Chief Operating Officer of Satellite BG, said: “We are very pleased to have entered into this strategic partnership with SES ASTRA. Satellite BG is a new Direct-to-Home operator with the aim of establishing itself as market leader in HD and 3D television in Bulgaria. We have chosen to work with SES ASTRA due to its technical experience and the fast development and optimal coverage of its 23.5 degrees East orbital position.”
About SES ASTRA
SES ASTRA is the leading Direct-to-Home (DTH) satellite system in Europe. The satellite fleet currently comprises 16 satellites. The ASTRA satellite system delivers services to more than 125 million DTH and cable households and transmits more than 2,600 analogue and digital television and radio channels. SES ASTRA also provides satellite-based multimedia, internet and telecommunication services to enterprises, governments and their agencies. With 190 High Definition (HD) channels on its main orbital positions, ASTRA represents the most important HDTV platform for Europe’s leading broadcasters. The prime orbital positions for ASTRA are 19.2 degrees East, 28.2 degrees East, 23.5 degrees East, 5 degrees East and 31.5 degrees East. For further information: www.ses-astra.com
SES (Euronext Paris and Luxembourg Stock Exchange: SESG) wholly owns the market-leading satellite operators SES ASTRA and SES WORLD SKIES, and participations in Ciel in Canada, QuetzSat in Mexico as well as a strategic participation in satellite infrastructure start-up O3b Networks. SES provides outstanding satellite communications solutions via a global fleet of 44 satellites. For further information: www.ses.com
About SATELLITE BG AD
Satellite BG AD is a new company with its primary business being Direct-to-home (DTH) satellite operations. Its programme package includes more than 60 Standard and 12 High Definition channels. Satellite BG offers exclusive content, value added services, high quality of service and good customer relationships.
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