For the first time in its history, World Cup football is preparing to take place in Africa, with four satellites operated by Eutelsat Communications (Euronext Paris: ETL) at the heart of a state-of-the-art broadcast infrastructure that will enable channels around the world to deliver matches, commentary, interviews and reports to TV viewers.
With high-power capacity focused over Africa, Europe and the Middle East, Eutelsat’s W2A, W3A, W4 and W7 satellites will support the exceptional resources deployed by rights-holding organisations and television channels to offer worldwide coverage of the 30 days of sport in South Africa.
The European Broadcasting Union (EBU) will reinforce its existing permanent capacity on Eutelsat satellites with two extra 72 MHz transponders booked on the W2A satellite. This satellite will enable the games, summary reports and highlights of the championship to be broadcast live from the EBU’s international broadcast centre, located for the event in Soweto, to its headquarters in Geneva. Images will then be delivered by the EBU to its 75 broadcast members and other clients in extended Europe, using W2A for Europe and W3A for Africa and the Middle East.
In addition to carrying live broadcasts of matches by rights holders, Eutelsat will provide customers operating in South Africa with satellite links so that journalists working in the field can be directly connected to studios in their respective countries. Clients including GlobeCast, APTN, Arqiva, Telenor and TVI, who all already lease permanent capacity on Eutelsat, will reinforce their resources on W2A, W7 and W3A for these transmissions.
Commenting on Eutelsat’s activity for the 2010 World Cup, Michel de Rosen, Eutelsat CEO said: “This 19th edition of the FIFA World Cup, in South Africa, presents Eutelsat with a new opportunity to support customers with resources optimised for live broadcasts to audiences around the globe. This ultimate sporting event provides a unique platform to show the drive for innovation shared by players in the broadcast community, which has propelled sport into High-Definition and is now opening the era of 3D. With our coverage of Africa significantly boosted over the last 12 months by the W2A and W7 satellites, Eutelsat is delighted to be part of the infrastructure mobilised for the World Cup and to pursue a year of remarkable sports events showcasing this new dimension, which include the final of Six Nations Rugby and at this moment, the Roland Garros tennis championship.”
About Eutelsat Communications
Eutelsat Communications (Euronext Paris: ETL, ISIN code: FR0010221234) is the holding company of Eutelsat S.A.. With capacity commercialised on 26 satellites that provide coverage over the entire European continent, as well as the Middle East, Africa, India and significant parts of Asia and the Americas, Eutelsat is one of the world’s three leading satellite operators in terms of revenues. At 31 March 2010, Eutelsat’s satellites were broadcasting more than 3,500 television channels. More than 1,100 channels broadcast via its HOT BIRD(TM) video neighbourhood at 13 degrees East which serves over 120 million cable and satellite homes in Europe, the Middle East and North Africa. The Group’s satellites also serve a wide range of fixed and mobile telecommunications services, TV contribution markets, corporate networks, and broadband markets for Internet Service Providers and for transport, maritime and in-flight markets. Eutelsat’s broadband subsidiary, Skylogic, markets and operates access to high speed internet services through teleports in France and Italy that serve enterprises, local communities, government agencies and aid organisations in Europe, Africa, Asia and the Americas. Headquartered in Paris, Eutelsat and its subsidiaries employ nearly 650 commercial, technical and operational employees from 28 countries.