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Europe goes on a satellite shopping spree in America
Posted: Thu, Mar 29, 2001, 11:35 AM ET (1635 GMT)
Boeing 702 satellite illustration European companies announced Wednesday a number of deals to purchase American satellites and even entire satellite companies. The biggest of the deals, announced to coincide with the Satellite 2001 conference in Washington, was the $5-billion purchase of satellite services provider GE Americom by Luxembourg-based SES. GE Americom and SES's other satellite holdings will be rolled into a new company, SES Global, headquartered in Luxembourg. GE Capital, the former owner of GE Americom, will own a quarter of the new company. The announcement came a day after Norwegian telecommunications company Telenor said it would purchase COMSAT Mobile Communications, a company that provides data, voice, and video communications via Inmarsat, from Lockheed Martin for $116.5 million. Other deals announced Wednesday includes an agreement by Dutch-based New Skies to purchase a Boeing 702 communications satellite to serve the Americas; the NSS-8 spacecraft will be launched by Sea Launch in the third quarter of 2003. Sea Launch also picked up an agreement to launch two Spaceway communications satellites, also built by Boeing, for Hughes Electronics. Boeing also won a Delta 4 launch contract from Indonesian telecom firm PT Pasifik Satelit Nusantara and made an agreement with Italian aerospace firm Alenia Spazio whereby Boeing will purchase Delta 2 fuel tanks from Alenia Spazio in exchange for the Italian company using Deltas to launch its spacecraft.
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