Global Communications, Invacom, And Era Technology Winners of the SES ASTRA Innovation Contest

SES ASTRA supports innovation in the field of DTH satellite reception / Winners awarded 150.000 Euros each / Products to increase consumer attractiveness of DTH satellite reception

Betzdorf (Luxembourg), 28 September 2007. – SES ASTRA, an SES company (Euronext Paris and Luxembourg Stock Exchange: SESG), announced that it has selected Global Communications, Invacom, and ERA Technology as the winners of the ASTRA INNOVATION CONTEST. Launched at IBC in 2006, this contest is aimed at stimulating research organisations and the satellite industry to develop innovative concepts to further increase the consumer attractiveness and features of direct-to-home (DTH) satellite reception.

The satellite and TV equipment manufacturers Global Communications and Invacom were awarded a prize for their concept of using optical fibre infrastructure inside buildings to distribute DTH signals from the antenna to the set-top box. Distribution of satellite signals over fibre has several significant advantages over classical cable distribution, in particular for medium- and large size installations. First of all, it improves the quality of the transmission through increased reliability; second, it reduces the power consumption, and finally it facilitates the install by making it plug-and-play.

ERA Technology, part of Cobham plc, was awarded a prize in the category Research Laboratory for its proposal of a transparent satellite TV antenna. The technology was originally developed for mobile satellite communication applications. This innovative concept will add new technical features to satellite antennas that will help to considerably improve the design of DTH- and SMATV (Satellite Master Antenna Television) antenna installations.

Each of the winners will be awarded 150.000 Euros of which at least 75 percent is to be invested in the further development and market introduction of the proposed innovation.

Alexander Oudendijk, Chief Commercial Officer of SES ASTRA, said: “The ASTRA INNOVATION CONTEST highlights our strong dedication to innovation. It encourages the development of new products in the field of DTH, and helps us improve our services to our customers and to the DTH market.”

(Source: SES)