Europe group chosen for Dh5b Yahsat satellite deal

Staff Report Dubai: Al Yah Satellite Communications Company (Yahsat), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Mubadala Development Company, has selected a consortium of EADS Astrium, Thales and Alenia Space as the preferred bidder to build a Dh5 billion dual satellite communications system, the company said in an e-mailed statement. Yahsat was incorporated earlier this year and is mandated to fulfil the satellite communication requirements of government and commercial customers in the Middle East, Africa, Southern Europe and South East Asia. Yahsat will develop, procure, own and operate a hybrid (Government and commercial) communication satellite system, and will strategically fill the current gaps in the existing satellite market. ——————————————————————————– ——————————————————————————– YahSat will focus on providing solutions for internet trunking via satellite, corporate data networks and backhauling services to telecom operators, in addition to broadcasting services. « This is a tremendously exciting time to be in the satellite communications industry. We are seeing a boom in satellite demand and Yahsat is perfectly positioned to take advantage of the wealth of opportunities in our region, » said Waleed Al Mokarrab Al Muhairi, COO of Mubadala and Chairman of Yahsat. « Thanks to the long-term vision of the Abu Dhabi government, we see Yahsat as equipped to become a leading player in the regional satellite market, » he said. The global commercial satellite industry generated over $80 billion in revenue in 2005 alone, with the highest revenue growth being registered in the Middle East and Africa region. « The resources and the technology that we are putting behind Yahsat will enable us to take a leading position in this competitive sector, » added Waleed Al Mokarrab. Main focus Yahsat will now focus on completing the negotiations with the designated consortium with a view to finalising the contract as soon as possible to commence the manufacturing phase. Mubadala Development Company is an investment and development vehicle established and wholly owned by the Government of the Emirate of Abu Dhabi. Its mission is to invest in commercially viable, strat-egic, industrial and commercial partnerships.