SES announced today that Canal+ Overseas, the international subsidiary of French Pay-TV operator Canal+, has contracted multiple transponders and signed a long-term agreement for its subsidiary CANAL+ AFRIQUE in order to distribute the CANAL+/CANALSAT pay-TV bouquet of channels in Africa over the SES-4 satellite at the orbital location of 338 degrees East.

CANAL+/CANALSAT is the first French-speaking pay-TV offer in Africa, distributed by CANAL+ AFRIQUE. The new contract with SES includes renewed and additional capacity and will allow Canal+ Overseas to extend its offer and migrate the pay-TV bouquet from the current NSS-7 spacecraft to the upcoming SES-4 satellite, without changing the orbital position and without a repointing of customer dishes. It ensures the long-term availability of the entire Canal+ Overseas programme line-up, standard definition as well as high-definition, via a single orbital position and to all of Canal+ Overseas’ target markets in Africa.

The 338 degrees East position is one of the most highly demanded orbital locations for trans-Atlantic traffic serving Africa, Europe and the Americas. SES-4 has been built by Space System/Loral and will be launched on board an ILS/Proton booster from Baikonur, Kazakhstan, in the fourth quarter of this year. The massive spacecraft carries 52 C-band transponders as well as 72 Ku-band transponders and as such will be the largest satellite in the SES satellite fleet. SES-4 will replace the NSS-7 spacecraft, releasing this satellite for new missions at other orbital positions.

States Ferdinand Kayser, Chief Commercial Officer of SES: “We are pleased to offer Canal+ Overseas a new satellite at 338 degrees East and extend our existing collaboration. This orbital location is already a well-established SES neighborhood over Africa and will offer our customers considerable incremental capacity for growth with SES-4. As Canal+ Overseas aims to increase the number of channels and services on offer and plans to introduce new HDTV services, SES will be delighted to provide the required state-of-the-art satellite capacity optimally covering all target markets in Africa.”