Boeing to sell commerical satellite capacity

By Dow Jones Newswires-Wall Street Journal
Posted Feb. 23 at 7:18 a.m.

Boeing Co., seeking to boost its space businesses, said it will begin selling satellite communications services, joining a long list of international companies vying to provide the U.S. government and other countries with such services.

Announced Tuesday, the move for the first time expands the scope of Boeing’s traditional satellite-making unit into the hotly-contested arena of marketing commercial-satellite capacity to the Pentagon and other government bodies.

Along with other aerospace manufacturers, Boeing previously designed and built commercial satellites with a portion of their payload reserved to serve government customers.

Such projects, called piggyback or hosted payloads, have been gaining prominence as a relatively fast and inexpensive way to meet fast-growing demand for bandwidth from the Pentagon and other U.S. and foreign governmental agencies. Otherwise, the Pentagon builds and operates its own communications satellites.

But now, as part of its foray into this new market segment, Boeing and its partners in many cases want to compete with some established private satellite-operators to lease communications capacity directly to the military. Boeing hopes to team with certain operators in offering capacity to the U.S. military and other governmental entities, relying on existing as well as future fleets of commercially-operated satellites.

Craig Cooning, chief executive of Boeing Satellite Systems International, said the initiative will offer “a valuable service both for the military and for commercial users.” Sparked partly by the need to transmit huge volumes of videos taken by unmanned aircraft over Afghanistan and Iraq, the U.S. military’s appetite for all types of satellite capacity is projected to continue to outstrip overall supply well past the end of the decade.

-By Andy Pasztor

Read more about the topics in this post: ,

Companies in this article


Read more about this company »

Comments are closed.