Shares in Luxembourg-based satellite operator SES, along with several European competitors, rose after the US telecoms regulator gave SES authorisation to “significantly expand” its O3b fleet.
26 new O3b satellites were approved by the Federal Communications Commission, adding to the current 16, SES said in a press release on 8 June 2018.
Steve Collar, the company’s president and CEO, stated in the announcement:
“This important FCC grant provides SES with the means to grow and scale our network, connecting the planet and delivering world class solutions to our customers globally.”
Collar also said:
“The FCC grant provides the platform to exponentially scale the network in response to surging demand for global data connectivity.”
The new satellites will serve the US market. The press release said that:
“The O3b fleet is the only [non-geostationary orbit] system delivering fibre-like broadband services today. O3b mPOWER, when launched, will enable an even wider array of industries and customers to tap into this high-performance connectivity.”
Following the announcement, UBS, a Swiss investment bank, upgraded its analyst recommendations on both SES and Eutelsat, its Paris-based rival, from “neutral” to “buy”.