Following an international competition, EADS Astrium in partnership with Alcatel has been selected to build two Arabsat telecommunications satellites. With this new contract, EADS has further confirmed its expertise in the telecommunications satellite domain. Commissioning of the spacecraft is scheduled for 2006.

This third contract extends the series of successes achieved by the EADS Space division over the last month. Even before the contract to build two Pleiades Earth observation satellites for the French Space Agency CNES at the beginning of October, EADS Astrium had already signed up to manufacture the HotBird-8 telecommunications satellite for Eutelsat.

The EADS Astrium order book now includes a total of 10 satellites. The array of 4 telecommunications satellites represents about 30% of the 2003 market for telecommunications spacecraft.

Commenting on this new contract, Philippe Camus and Rainer Hertrich, CEOs of EADS, expressed their satisfaction: “We are delighted with this new success for EADS Astrium. This contract, negotiated with the support of EADS International, confirms both EADS Astrium leadership and global positioning on the market and the validity of our strategy of space industry restructuring and intensified marketing. We are convinced that our space business is well on the track to business success.” They added, “These projects are extremely important to the European space industry. They demonstrate that Europe has a major role to play in space activities outside the European marketplace”.

EADS is the second largest aerospace and defence company in the world with revenues of € 29.9 billion in the year 2002 and a workforce of more than 100,000. It is a systems integrator and as such is one of the few companies worldwide capable of combining various products and technologies to form complete systems and offering the associated services. The EADS Group includes the aircraft manufacturer Airbus, the world’s largest helicopter supplier Eurocopter and the joint venture MBDA, the second largest missile producer in the global market. EADS is the major partner in the Eurofighter consortium, is the prime contractor for the Ariane launcher, develops the A400M military transport aircraft and is the largest industrial partner for the European satellite navigation system Galileo. EADS has over 70 sites in France, Germany, Great Britain and Spain and is active in many regions worldwide, amongst them America, Russia and Asia.