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Eutelsat S.A.
TypeSociété Anonyme
CAC Mid 60 Component
IndustryCommunications satellite
Founded1977; 44 years ago (1977)
HeadquartersParis, France
Key people
Rodolphe Belmer (CEO)

Eutelsat S.A. is a European satellite operator. Providing coverage over the entire European continent, the Middle East, Africa, Asia and the Americas, it is the world's third-largest satellite operator in terms of revenues.[1]

Eutelsat's satellites are used for broadcasting nearly 7,000 television stations, of which 1,400 are in high-definition television, and 1,100 radio stations to over 274 million cable and satellite homes. They also serve requirements for TV contribution services, corporate networks, mobile communications, Internet backbone connectivity and broadband access for terrestrial, maritime and in-flight applications. EUTELSAT is headquartered in Paris, France. Eutelsat Communications Chief Executive Officer is currently Rodolphe Belmer.[2]

In October 2017, EUTELSAT acquired NOORSAT, one of the leading satellite service providers in the Middle East, from Bahrain's Orbit Holding Group. NOORSAT is the premier distributor of Eutelsat capacity in the Middle East, serving blue-chip customers and providing services for over 300 TV channels almost exclusively from Eutelsat's market-leading the Middle East and North Africa neighbourhoods at 7/8° West and 25.5° East.[3]


European Telecommunications Satellite Organization membership
European Telecommunications Satellite Organization membership
1/10 scale mockup of a Eutelsat W3 satellite, a Spacebus 4000C3
1/10 scale mockup of a Eutelsat W3 satellite, a Spacebus 4000C3

The European Telecommunications Satellite Organization (EUTELSAT) was originally set up in (1977; 44 years ago (1977)), by 17 European countries as an intergovernmental organisation (IGO). Its role was to develop and operate a satellite-based telecommunications infrastructure for Europe. The Convention establishing the European Telecommunications Satellite Organization EUTELSAT was opened for signature in July 1982 and entered into force on 1 September 1985.[4]

In 1982, EUTELSAT decided to start operations of its first TV channel (Sky Channel or Sky One) on the Orbital Test Satellite (OTS) in cooperation with European Space Agency (ESA). This was the first satellite-based direct-to-home TV channel launched in Europe. In 1983, EUTELSAT launched its first satellite to be used for telecommunications and TV distribution

Initially established to address satellite telecommunications demand in Western Europe, EUTELSAT rapidly developed its infrastructure to expand coverage to additional services (i.e. TV) and markets, such as Central and Eastern Europe in 1989, and the Middle East, the African continent, and large parts of Asia and the Americas from the 1990s.

EUTELSAT was the first satellite operator in Europe to broadcast television channels direct-to-home. It developed its premium neighbourhood of five Hot Bird satellites in the mid-1990s to offer capacity that would be able to attract hundreds of channels to the same orbital location, appealing to wider audiences for consumer satellite TV.

With the general liberalisation of the telecommunications sector in Europe, EUTELSAT's assets, liabilities and operational activities were transferred to a private company called Eutelsat S.A. established for this purpose in July 2001.[5] The structure role and activities of the new intergovernmental organisation EUTELSAT IGO evolved. To this day, the main purpose of EUTELSAT IGO has been to ensure that Eutelsat S.A. observes the Basic Principles set forth in the EUTELSAT Amended Convention entered into force in November 2002. These Basic Principles refer to public service/universal service obligations, pan European coverage by the satellite system, non-discrimination and fair competition.[6] The Executive Secretary of EUTELSAT IGO participates in all meetings of the Board of Directors of Eutelsat Communications S.A. and Eutelsat S.A. as an observer to the Board (censeur).[7]

In April 2005, the principal shareholders of Eutelsat S.A. grouped their investment in a new entity (Eutelsat Communications), which is now the holding company of the Group owning 95.2% of Eutelsat S.A. on 6 October 2005. Currently it owns 96.0% of Eutelsat S.A.[8]

On 31 July 2013, Eutelsat Communications announced the 100% acquisition of Satélites Mexicanos, S.A. de C.V. ("Satmex") for US$831 million in cash plus the assumption of US$311 million in Satmex debt, pending government and regulatory approvals.[9] The transaction was finalized on 2 January 2014. Based in Mexico, Satmex operates three satellites at contiguous positions, 113° West (Satmex 6), 114.9° West (Satmex 5) and 116.8° West (Satmex 8) that cover 90% of the population of the Americas.

In December 2015, the company announced a partnership [10] with Facebook to launch an internet satellite over Africa by 2016 where Facebook lease all of a satellite's high throughput Ka-band capacity, however, the satellite was destroyed during launch preparations.

In December 2020, Eutelsat launched Eutelsat Konnect, a domestic broadband service targeting remote localities, in the United Kingdom with a planned subsequent launch across Europe.[11]


In September 2018, Eutelsat announced CIRRUS, which enabled broadcasters to deliver content to satellite and over-the-top media service. Viewers can watch content on screens, phones and tablets, access multiple programmes, record and rewind and view detailed programme information.[12]


EUTELSAT sells capacity on 39 satellites located in geosynchronous orbit between 133° West and 174° East. On 1 March 2012, EUTELSAT changed the names of its satellites. The group's satellites mostly take the Eutelsat name, with the relevant figure for their orbital position and a letter indicating their order of arrival at that position. On 21 May 2014, Eutelsat Americas (formerly Satmex) aligned its satellite names with the Eutelsat brand.[13]

Satellite COSPAR ID Location Regions served Launch Comments
Eutelsat 3B 2014-030A 3°E Europe, Africa, the Middle East, Central Asia, Brazil 26 May 2014 Entered service in July 2014[14]
Eutelsat 5 West A 2002-035A 5°W Europe, Americas, Africa 5 July 2002 Formerly named Atlantic Bird 3 until March 2012, was also called Stellat 5
Eutelsat 5 West B 2019-067A 5°W 9 October 2019
Eutelsat 7A 2004-008A 7°E Europe, Middle East, Africa 16 March 2004 Formerly named Eutelsat W3A until March 2012
Eutelsat 7B 2013-022A 7°E Europe, Middle East, Africa 14 May 2013
Eutelsat 7C 2019-034B 7°E Europe, Middle East, Africa 20 June 2019
Eutelsat 7 West A 2011-051A 7.3°W Middle East, North Africa 24 September 2011 Formerly named Atlantic Bird 7 until March 2012
Eutelsat 8 West B 2015-039A 8°W Africa, Middle East 20 August 2015
Eutelsat KA-SAT[15][16] 2010-069A 9°E Europe 26 December 2010
Eutelsat 9B [17][18] 2016-005A 9°E Europe, North Africa, Middle East 30 January 2016
Eutelsat 10A 2009-016A 10°E Europe, Africa, Middle East 3 April 2009 Formerly named Eutelsat W2A until March 2012; S-band payload not yet entered into service due to an anomaly.[19][20][21] Solaris Mobile filed the insurance claim and should be able to offer some, but not all of the services it was planning to offer.[22][23][24]
Eutelsat 12 West B 2001-042A 12.5°W Europe, Americas 25 September 2001 Formerly named Atlantic Bird 2 until March 2012 and Eutelsat 8 West A until October 2015, when it was redeployed to 12.5° West.
HOT BIRD 13B[25] 2001-011A 13°E Europe, North Africa, Middle East 5 August 2006 Formerly named Hot Bird 8 until March 2012
HOT BIRD 13C 2008-065D 13°E Europe, Africa, Middle East 20 December 2008 Formerly named Hot Bird 9 until March 2012
HOT BIRD 13E[26] 2006-007B 13°E Europe, North Africa, Middle East 11 March 2006 Formerly named Eurobird 9A until March 2012; former Hot Bird 7A satellite / Eutelsat 9A
Eutelsat 16A 2011-057A 16°E Europe, Sub-Saharan Africa, Indian Ocean Islands 7 October 2011 Formerly named Eutelsat W3C until March 2012
Eutelsat 21B 2012-062B 21.5°E Europe, Middle East, North Africa, West Africa, Central Asia 10 November 2012 Fully operational since 19 December 2012.[27]
Eutelsat 33C[28] 2001-011A 33°E Europe 8 March 2001 Satellite is currently being redeployed at 33° East where it will be co-located with EUTELSAT 33B. Formerly named Eurobird 1 until March 2012 and Eutelsat 28A until July 2015
Eutelsat 33E 2009-008B 33°E Europe, South-West Asia 12 February 2009 Formerly Hot Bird 10 and Atlantic Bird 4A[29]
Eutelsat 36A 2000-028A 36°E Africa, Russia 24 May 2000 Formerly named Eutelsat W4 until March 2012.
Eutelsat 36B 2009-065A 36°E Europe, Africa, Middle East, Russia 24 November 2009 Formerly named Eutelsat W7 until March 2012
Eutelsat 36C 2015-082A 36°E Russia, Africa 2015
Eutelsat 36 West A 2002-040A 36.5°W Europe, Middle East, Americas 28 August 2002 Formerly named Atlantic Bird 1 until March 2012, and Eutelsat 12 West A
Eutelsat 48D 2008-065B 48°E Afghanistan, Central Asia 20 December 2008 Co-branded AFGHANSAT 1. Formerly named Eutelsat 28B until January 2014, Eutelsat 48B until August 2012, W2M until March 2012.[30]
Eutelsat 65 West A 2016-014A 65°W Americas 9 March 2016
Eutelsat 70B 2012-069A 70.5°E Europe, Middle East, Africa, Central Asia, South East Asia, Australia 3 December 2012
Eutelsat 113 West A 2006-020A 113°W Americas 27 May 2006 Formerly Satmex 6 until May 2014
Eutelsat 115 West B 2015-010B 114.9°W Americas 2 March 2015
Eutelsat 117 West A 2013-012A 116.8°W Americas 2013 Formerly Satmex 8 until May 2014
Eutelsat 117 West B [31] 2016-038B 116.8°W Americas 15 June 2016 Formerly Satmex 9
Eutelsat 172B 2017-027A 172°E Asia-Pacific 1 June 2017
Eutelsat 174A 2005-052A 174°E Asia-Pacific 29 December 2005 Formerly EUTELSAT 172A, and GE-23 satellite
Eutelsat Konnect 2020-005B 7°E Europe, Africa 17 January 2020 First satellite to use Thales Alenia Space's all-electric Spacebus NEO platform
Eutelsat Quantum 2021-069B 48°E Middle East, North Africa 30 July 2021 First in-orbit reprogrammable satellite

Rented capacity

Satellite Location Regions served Launch
EUTELSAT 28E 28.2°E Europe 29 September 2013
EUTELSAT 28F 28.2°E Europe 28 September 2012
EUTELSAT 28G 28.2°E Europe 27 December 2014
Express AT1 56°E Europe, Asia 16 March 2014
Express AT2 140°E Europe, Asia 16 March 2014
SESAT 2 15°W Europe, Americas 19 October 1999

Former satellites

Satellite COSPAR ID Location Launched Inclined Retired Lost Comments
EUTELSATI F-1 1983-058A 13°E 1983 1989 1996 N/A
EUTELSAT I F-2 1984-081A 7°E 1984 1990 1993 N/A
EUTELSAT I F-4 1987-078B 7/13°E 1987 1993 2002 N/A
EUTELSAT I F-5 1988-063B 10°E 1988 1994 2000 N/A
Eutelsat 2 F-1 1990-079B 13°E 1990 1999 2003 N/A
Eutelsat 2 F-2 1991-003B 10°E 1991 2000 2005 N/A
Eutelsat 2 F-3 1991-083A 16°E 1991 2000 2004 N/A
Eutelsat 2 F-4 1992-041B 7°E 1992 2001 2003 N/A
Hot Bird 1 1995-016B 13°E 1995 2006 2007 2012
Eutelsat W2 1998-056A 16°E 1998 N/A 2010 N/A
Eutelsat W3B[32] 2010-056A 16°E 2010 N/A 2010 N/A
Eutelsat W75 1997-049A 4°E 1997 N/A 2011 N/A Former Hot Bird 3 and Eurobird 4 satellite
Eurobird 4A 2000-052A 4°E 2000 N/A 2012 N/A Former Eutelsat W1 satellite
Eutelsat 4B 1998-057A 4°E 1998 2014 N/A Formerly named Eurobird 2 until March 2012, now at 4E and called Eutelsat 4B
Eutelsat 16B 1998-013A 16°E 1998 2015 N/A Formerly named Eurobird 16 until March 2012; former Atlantic Bird 4 and Hot Bird 4 satellite
Eutelsat 16C 2000-019A 16°E 2000 2018 N/A Formerly named SESAT 1 until March 2012. Operated in inclined orbit at 16° East
Eutelsat 31A 2003-043A 31°E 2003 2018 N/A Formerly named Eurobird and Eutelsat 33A
Eutelsat 33B 2002-051A 33°E 2002 2015 N/A Formerly named Eutelsat W5 until March 2012; lost one of two solar panels 16 June 2008.[33] Now at 25° East and called Eutelsat 25C.
Eutelsat 115 West A 1998-070A 114.8°W 1998 2015 N/A Formerly Satmex 5 until May 2014
Eutelsat 48A 1996-067A 48°E 21 November 1996 2017 N/A Formerly named Eutelsat W48 until March 2012; former Hot Bird 2 and Eurobird 9 satellite; operating in inclined orbit.
Eutelsat 25B 2013-044A 25.5°E 29 August 1998 Eutelsat's share in the satellite sold to Es'hailSat in 2018.[34]


  • (in French and English) Guy Lebègue, (trad. Robert J. Amral), «Eutelsat II: OK For West-to-East Service!», in Revue aerospatiale, n° 73, November 1990


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External links

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