World leader in launch services, Arianespace reports successful start to 2017 in Asia and confidently looks to the future
Arianespace continues to perform strongly in the Asia-Pacific region, with satellite launches for customers in Australia, India, Indonesia, Japan and Korea over the past 12 months. Since the beginning of 2017, Arianespace has successfully launched Telkom 3S for Telkom Indonesia and KOREASAT–7 for ktsat, with three further launches for India and Japan scheduled later in the year, all using Ariane 5. Arianespace is planning for 12 launches in 2017: seven by Ariane 5, three by Vega and two by Soyuz. World leader in commercial launch services, Arianespace confidently looks to the future with increasing focus on the constellation market.
Arianespace confirms leadership in the Asia-Pacific market
Since Arianespace’s first mission for an Asian customer in 1981, the company has launched a total of 78 satellites for 17 customers in the Asia-Pacific region. With regional offices operating in Singapore since 1996 and Tokyo since 1986, the region is a core market for the company, contributing significantly to a 60% global market share for commercial launches. This represents around 25% of Arianespace’s global business. Arianespace is the launch service provider of choice for new operators in the region and over the years has launched the first-ever satellites for customers in Australia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore and Vietnam.
Arianespace’s first customer in the region came from India, with the 1981 launch of the first-ever satellite for ISRO (the Indian Space Research Organisation). Australia’s Aussat was the second regional customer with the launch of its K3 satellite in 1987 (the company later became part of Singtel Optus). Arianespace subsequently launched a further five satellites for Optus and two more for Singtel between 1998 and 2014. Shin Satellite of Thailand became Arianespace’s first customer from South East Asia in 1991, with the contract for the launch of Thaicom 1. Other key customers from South East Asia include Telkom Indonesia and BRIsat from Indonesia, Measat from Malaysia, ABS from Hong Kong and Vinasat from Vietnam. In Australia, nbn is an Arianespace customer; for North East Asia, customers are SKY Perfect JSAT from Japan, along with Korea’s ktsat and KARI.
2017 continues to be a prolific year for Asia-Pacific launches. After two successful launches with Ariane 5 for Telkom Indonesia (Telkom 3S on February 14) and ktsat (KOREASAT-7 on May 4), three other missions are planned: two for the Indian Space Research Organisation (the GSAT-17 and GSAT-11 satellites) and one for BSAT (the BSAT-4a satellite).
Seizing future opportunities
After announcing on April 20 the signature of a contract to launch the Horizons 3e satellite (to be operated by SKY Perfect JSAT and Intelsat through a joint venture), Arianespace’s order book now stands at €4.9 billion for 51 launches (19 by Ariane 5, 25 by Soyuz and seven by Vega) for 28 customers worldwide.
Looking to the future, Arianespace will not only continue to offer high reliability launch capability for large geostationary orbit (GEO) telecommunications satellites using Ariane 5, but the company also is now well prepared for the rapidly changing nature of the satellite market – where customers are increasingly looking at the launch of broadband and Earth observation constellations into low Earth orbits (LEO) and medium Earth orbits (MEO). Using the family of launchers in service today and the introduction of Ariane 6 and Vega C over the next decade, Arianespace is perfectly positioned to answer to this promising market.
Arianespace new governance benefits customers
Arianespace’s governance has undergone two major changes since the end of 2016:
In December 2016, Airbus Safran Launchers became the majority shareholder in Arianespace, with a 74% stake, after the transfer of shares from French space agency CNES. The balance of Arianespace’s shares, held by companies in the European launcher industry, remains unchanged. As a subsidiary of Airbus Safran Launchers, Arianespace retains its status as a distinct company – with a neutral stance in relation to satellite manufacturers – and continues to be the single point of contact for its customers.
On March 27, 2017, Arianespace’s shareholders voted unanimously to change the legal form of the launch services operator, as well as its governance. Stéphane Israël, confirmed as Chief Executive Officer of Arianespace, also joins the Executive Committee of Airbus Safran Launchers as Executive Vice President, in charge of Civil Launcher Programs.
These changes will enable Arianespace and its industrial partners to enhance their agility and competitiveness to keep pace with the changing market, all for the greater benefit of customers. In addition, they will help Arianespace build stronger foundations for the future, with the Ariane 6 and Vega C launchers.
Arianespace uses space to make life better on Earth by providing launch services for all types of satellites into all orbits. It has orbited more than 550 satellites since 1980, using its family of three launchers, Ariane, Soyuz and Vega, from launch sites in French Guiana (South America) and Baikonur, Kazakhstan. Arianespace is headquartered in Evry, near Paris, and has a technical facility at the Guiana Space Center, Europe’s Spaceport in French Guiana, plus local offices in Washington, D.C., Tokyo and Singapore. Arianespace is a subsidiary of Airbus Safran Launchers, which holds 74% of its share capital, with the balance held by 17 other shareholders from the European launcher industry.