Eutelsat Communications today announced that Nilesat, the Egyptian satellite company, has inked a 10-year contract for five transponders at the 7° West orbital position. The capacity will be activated in the first phase on Eutelsat’s ATLANTIC BIRD™ 4A satellite, and subsequently transferred to ATLANTIC BIRD™ 7 which is scheduled for launch and deployment at 7° West in 2011.

This new contract forms part of the strategic agreement signed in March 2009 between Eutelsat and Nilesat to collaborate on a long-term basis on optimising resources at the 7° West position, which is used by both companies for satellite broadcasting across North Africa, and the Middle East.

Eutelsat has been partnering with Nilesat since July 2006 when its ATLANTIC BIRD™ 4 satellite was copositioned at 7° West with the Nilesat satellites. This constellation of four satellites already broadcast over 660 television and 130 radio channels to users equipped for Direct-to-Home reception.

Ahmed Anis, CEO of Nilesat, said: “We are really enthusiastic about this partnership with Eutelsat which concurs with the launching of our new satellite Nilesat 201 at 7° West. These new capacities will definitely encourage new investment opportunities at 7° West "the Orbital position of the Arab Families".

Michel de Rosen, CEO of Eutelsat Communications, added: “Our continued close cooperation with Nilesat is making a core contribution to fuelling the transition into a fully digital broadcasting environment in North Africa and the Middle East.
This new contract, to 2020, adds further weight to our relationship and strengthens our shared objective to leverage the 7° West neighbourhood to serve some of the most dynamic markets for digital services.”