SES video revenue continues to slide, cloud services now company-wide strategy

WASHINGTON — Fleet operator SES is including cloud providers to its knowledge and broadcast companies whereas acknowledging that broadcast income has been shrinking sooner than knowledge income is rising. 

SES reported 1.434 billion euros ($1.591 billion) in income for the primary 9 months of 2019, down 3.6% in comparison with the identical time final yr. TV video broadcasting, which represented 62% of the corporate’s whole income, shrank by 8.1% to 904.5 million euros. 

Ferdinand Kayser, head of SES’s video division, stated decrease income from U.S. broadcasters who’re dropping standard-definition channels, mixed with altering viewing habits amongst shoppers, weighed down SES’s monetary efficiency. The corporate has already borne the brunt of these losses, he stated throughout an Oct. 25 earnings name. 

“We imagine that this pattern will not be indicative of the anticipated long-term income trajectory,” Kayser stated.

Kayser stated the full variety of channels SES broadcasts has grown by 3%, with capacity-intensive HD and Extremely-HD channels additionally rising in quantity. Lower than 10% of the corporate’s video enterprise comes from the U.S., he stated, limiting the corporate’s publicity to extra losses there. 

“We are able to verify that the decline in video is decelerating,” he stated. 

Three days after the earnings name, SES introduced that it’s poised to boost 500 million euros subsequent month by issuing eight-year bonds that may assist refinance current debt. In an Oct. 27 information launch, SES stated the bond’s 0.875% coupon price is the bottom within the firm’s historical past. The transaction, which was oversubscribed by greater than 5 occasions, will “additional strengthen [SES’s] liquidity profile forward of a EUR 650 million senior debt maturity in March of subsequent yr.” 

Cloud infusion

Kayser stated SES can now promote turnkey media supply providers that leverage Microsoft’s Azure cloud community to broadcasters and content material supply firms. SES clients can use Microsoft Azure to switch video recordsdata, put together content material for broadcast, and different capabilities, he stated. 

Intelsat, Viasat and Inmarsat additionally use Microsoft’s Azure community as a rising variety of satellite tv for pc operators heat to cloud networks.

SES CEO Steve Collar stated SES might discover new methods of delivering video content material via its rising use of cloud servers. 

“Every part we do now could be referenced to the cloud,” he stated. “Our partnership with Microsoft permits us to increase Azure throughout our community, offering lightning-fast entry to the total functionality of linked cloud.”

John-Paul Hemingway, head of SES’s networks division, which incorporates the O3b medium-Earth-orbit satellites, stated SES Networks is investing in community intelligence, analytics and automation, to extend buyer adoption of satellite-enabled cloud providers.

GEO-MEO interoperability

Collar stated SES needs to proceed rising its networks enterprise by simplifying using satellites in a number of orbits. SES has 20 O3b satellites in 8,000-kilometer medium Earth orbits, and greater than 50 satellites in 36,000-kilometer geostationary orbit. 

Collar stated SES has leveraged satellites in each orbits to realize maritime clients, notably within the cruiseship sector. Now, the corporate needs to broaden the enchantment of a number of orbits to aviation, the place plane can shortly cross via the protection zones of a number of satellites throughout a single flight. 

SES introduced Oct. 23 it had demonstrated switching between MEO and GEO satellites on a flight from Florida to Nicaragua utilizing Thales FlytLIVE connectivity community, a modem from Hughes Community Methods and a phased array antenna from ThinKom. 

“That is notably related as aero is already our quickest rising section, up virtually 30% in Q3 this yr versus Q3 final yr,” Collar stated. 

Proving out that interoperability will assist put together the aviation marketplace for the seven MEO O3b mPower satellites and the geostationary SES-17 satellite tv for pc that SES has scheduled to launch in 2021, Collar stated. 

SES’s backlog of enterprise stood at 6.6 billion euros, down from 7.0 billion the identical time final yr and seven.6 billion euros on the finish of the third quarter of 2017.

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