SES claims resilient year as it inks long-term renewal with Sky | Satellite | News | Rapid TV News
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Leading satellite operator SES is claiming that it has completed a strong year of execution, a clear path to profitable growth and a commitment to shareholder return, but has also revealed that despite a flurry of deals in the area, video business continued to fall markedly over the next twelve months.
SES 25 Feb 2021
For the year ended 31 December 2020, SES reported total revenues of $1.876 billion, down 6.9% annual on a reported basis and 4.5% at constant currency exchange. Adjusted EBITDA was $1.152 billion, falling 6.9% and 5.9% on a reported basis and constant currency respectively. Net profit though fell 47.3% on a reported basis compared with 2019 to $203 million.

Looking at key business lines during the year, the main growth engine was Networks where underlying revenue grew, for the third consecutive year, at 5.3% at constant FX to total €759 million. Contribution from new business signed in 2019 supporting growth in Mobility ( up 9.0% annually), expansion of connectivity services driving a return to growth in Fixed Data (+6.7%), while Government (+1.7%) benefited from new business secured during the second half of 2020.

However, by contrast video business underlying revenues fell 8.0% at constant FX over the twelve months to €1.108 billion. This said the company reflected the combination of lower distribution revenue, falling 7.8% compared with the previous year, from ‘right-sizing’ of capacity by customers in mature markets, and lower Services revenue (-8.7%) including the impact of Covid-19 on Sports & Events revenue.

Yet despite the disappointment in video, SES noted that in the yearly results that it had secured more than €1.3 billion in customer agreements in the year including an important long-term commitment with Canal+ covering multiple orbital positions, as well contract extensions with public and commercial broadcasters across prime video neighbourhoods.

And in the latter regard SES also revealed that the UK’s leading pay-TV operator Sky UK had signed a multi-year, multi-transponder contract extension for satellite delivery of SD, HD and Ultra HD channels from the 28.2/28.5 degrees East orbital slots reaching across the UK and Ireland. The contract extension will add over €90 million in secured backlog to capacity already under contract that extends through 2027.

“We’re pleased to continue working with SES, a world leader in satellite provision. SES has been a valued partner to Sky for decades and this agreement represents the latest step in a long and successful relationship,” said Patrick Behar, chief business officer at Sky UK.

“This is a significant, multi-transponder, multi-year renewal founded on SES’s decades of delivering a flawless and immersive TV viewing experience to Sky UK customers,” added Steve Collar, CEO at SES. “It also underlines the continued and rising importance of satellites in delivering a premium content-viewing experience to end customers virtually everywhere.”